Susannah Streeter, Senior Investment and Markets Analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown
‘Relief has washed over the global stock markets in waves today, the biggest breaking on the news a vaccine for Covid 19 could be landing sooner rather than later. It’s prompted the busiest day ever in terms of volumes to the website and mobile app traffic at Hargreaves Lansdown.
‘The FTSE 100 rose by more than 5% on a crest of optimism after Pfizer and partner BioNTech said their COVID-19 vaccine is over 90% effective, based on a large scale clinical trial.
‘The positive news had cascaded through the markets with Informa, the specialist conference provider soaring by more than 20%, amid hopes real rather than virtual events will soon be staged once again. Primark owner, Associated British Foods which has been hit hard by forced closure of its stores also rose steeply, with the expectation future lockdowns would be limited. Energy giants BP and Shell were big gainers on the blue chip index, with the forecast that global growth and demand for oil would stage a sharper recovery. BP and Shell were among the most viewed companies on the Hargreaves Lansdown platform, alongside airline group IAG and aircraft engine manufacturer Rolls Royce which have also seen their share prices decimated because of the effect of the pandemic.
‘Limiting the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus will depend on just how quickly vaccine rollouts can take place, and that is likely to prove a logistical challenge. However, following on from the Biden bounce, the markets have been injected with a big dose of vaccine vigour with investors spotting a ray of light through the clouds, optimistic that the pandemic will finally subside.’