January 2021 Market Update
After a very positive start to the year for global equity markets, the last week of January was extremely volatile caused by retail investor involvement in the United States with stocks like GameStop. Incredibly, GameStop short sellers are down nearly US$20 billion, according to data from S3 Partners.
GameStop shares closed at $65.01 per share a week ago, but by the end of last week, they were higher by more than 400% to $328.24 per share.
Over the course of the final week of January, trading in these and other heavily shorted names generated historic trading volumes in equity markets, surpassing even the volume of trades taking place at the most volatile points of the pandemic in 2020. More than 23.6 billion shares of U.S.-traded stocks were exchanged on Wednesday last week marking the most ever in records spanning back more than a decade.
|Monthly performance to end of January 2021|
|FTSE 100 (UK)||-0.8%|
|Dow 30 (US)||-2.0%|
|Euro Stoxx 50 (Europe)||-2.0%|
|Nikkei 225 (Japan)||+0.8%|
In terms of currency, £ Sterling ended January at 1.37 US Dollars. This was 0.2% higher than the figure at the end of December 2020.
Against the Euro, £ Sterling ended January at 1.13 Euros, which was 1.0% higher than the December 2020 closing figure.
Inflation, as measured by the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) was 0.8% in December 2020 (this is December’s data which is reported in January). This was up from 0.6% in the previous month, largely as a result of rising transport costs and increasing prices for clothing and recreation and culture. The 12-month rate for the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rate which excludes owner occupied housing costs and council tax was 0.6% in December, up from 0.3% in November.
There were no further changes to the Bank of England base rate last week following the two previous cuts in March. The current rate remains at 0.1%.
Past performance is not a guide to future performance. The value of an investment and any income from it can fall as well as rise as a result of market and currency fluctuations. You may not get back the amount you originally invested.