Good morning. The FTSE is tipped to open 0.2pc lower and EuroSTOXX 50 futures have dipped 0.1pc despite plans to reopen the UK’s border with Europe. Oil futures dropped 1.5pc to re-test lows from Monday when coronavirus worries drove a sharp selloff. The pound rebounded from a three-day decline as Brexit talks edge towards their final deadline.
5 things to start your day
1) Christmas crisis for pubs and restaurants as sales plunge: Eight in 10 venues in England have been forced to shut over new rules, and hospitality sales slumped 62pc in the week to Dec 19 versus last year.
2) Car makers extend shutdowns to avoid Brexit and Covid chaos: Aston Martin, Bentley and BMW are keeping plants closed longer than usual over Christmas to avoid Covid and Brexit shipping chaos.
3) Elon Musk says he offered to sell Tesla to Apple but was ignored: Mr Musk said he offered to sell Tesla to the iPhone giant when it was in crisis over the chaotic early production of its Model 3 car.
4) Food firms face huge losses as produce rots on becalmed lorries: Almost £40m of British fish, fruit, meat and vegetables risked rotting away in a Kent lorry park on Tuesday night as borders stayed shut.
5) Britain’s chaotic PPE scramble as Covid catastrophe unfolded: In a special investigation, The Telegraph can reveal how billions were spent on protective gear in a mad rush at the start of the pandemic.
What happened overnight
US stock futures fell, commodities slipped and Treasuries edged higher on Wednesday after Donald Trump threw a last-minute spanner in to pandemic relief plans by threatening not to sign a long-awaited stimulus bill in to law.
S&P 500 futures were down half a percent by mid-morning in Asia and European and British equity futures fell by the same margin as the news offset hints of progress toward a British trade deal with Europe.
Ten-year US Treasury futures rose two ticks and the yield on US 10-year government bonds fell one basis point in Asia after Mr Trump’s tweet.
It also soured sentiment which had caught a boost after ITV’s political editor said in a late-night tweet that separate sources had raised the possibility of Britain and the European Union striking a trade deal on Wednesday.
The U.S. dollar index rose 0.1% as the greenback generally hung on to small but broad overnight gains.
The Australian dollar edged higher to $0.7540 and most other majors were pretty close to flat, with the euro at $1.2171 and sterling at $1.3390.
Asian stocks steadied, with MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan up 0.1% after three days of declines. Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.1%, although gains were concentrated in healthcare and technology stocks.
Both indexes are up more than 60% from March lows.
Coming up today
Last full day of stock market trading before Christmas.