• Italian stocks surge higher after economy minister remarks
  • GBP drops after weak data
  • Crypto under pressure after large drop
  • US-N.Korea talks progressing quickly
  • Fed/ECB preview

Stocks on the whole seem to have made a bright start to the week with the ITA40 leading the way higher. The benchmark has gained in excess of 3% today after some pro-European comments from the economy minister. This upbeat mood can be seen elsewhere with most of Europe ending the session green and the US500 moving above last week’s highs. 

A package of April data from the UK came in well below expectations sending the British currency broadly lower. The major disappointment came from construction where production shrank 3.3% in a year-over-year basis in April while the market consensus had called for a 1.8% slide. Looking into the details one may notice that the largest drop was experienced in public infrastructure, but it was the case over the past months this year so it came as not a big surprise.

Another rout stormed the cryptocurrency market over the weekend as one of the South Korean exchanges said there was a “cyber intrusion” in its system and an unknown amount of digital assets has been stolen. Steep declines were observed on all the major coins with Bitcoin plunging below the $7000 handle. It is worth to note that the capitalization of the whole cryptocurrency market has dipped below $300 billion for the first time since mid-April.

The US-N.Korean summit is in focus this week and according to a recent update from the White House the negotiations have moved “more quickly than expected”, after the initial discussions were carried out. The two country’s leaders have a highly anticipated meeting scheduled for tomorrow before a press conference from Trump is expected to begin at 1PM (BST).

As well as geopolitical events potentially impacting the markets in the coming days, there’s two major central bank decisions too. The Fed are widely expected to raise rates by another 0.25% on Wednesday evening before the ECB at Thursday lunchtime, where the focus will be on talk of a QE potential taper. We preview these events in more detail here.