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Investors flock to defensive stocks

by LLB Editor
25th Mar 21 11:14 am

After another miserable session on Wall Street last night, the FTSE 100 did its best to push ahead with a 0.3% gain to 6,729. Leading the charge were defensive stocks, namely companies that should continue to sell products and services regardless of the state of the economy.

Unilever, AstraZeneca and Reckitt Benckiser were among the group of stocks contributing the biggest gains on the market,” says AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould.

“After a big rally earlier in the year, mining stocks appear to be losing momentum with Antofagasta and Glencore among the biggest losers on the FTSE on Thursday. Investors seem increasingly concerned that the reopening of the global economy is going to experience more setbacks, meaning it is no longer a given that we’ll see soaring commodities demand.

“Gold and silver miners are among the worst performing parts of the UK market this year, with Fresnillo down 20% year to date.

“Overall, it’s been quite a challenging three months for investors. The market was high on vaccine-inspired euphoria in late 2020, pricing in a lot of future earnings growth before it’s happened. Now reality is sinking in that earnings forecasts could turn out to be too optimistic.”

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