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D-PIMS Weekly Market Update - Week of 10th to 16th May 2021

Today’s Monday Update:

Over the course of the last week, headlines were mostly economic or Coronavirus related:

• On Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that England could continue to the next stage of his four-step plan to bring the country out of lockdown by the summer, as the COVID-19 situation improved thanks to the rollout of vaccines and social restriction measures. Under Step 3, from May 17 people will be permitted to meet up indoors for the first time in months, in groups of up to six people or two full households together. Pubs, cafes and restaurants will be able to host customers indoors, also for the first time in months and subject to certain rules. Other indoor entertainment like cinemas and sports venues will also be able to resume activity. Johnson said the government would allow families and close friends to make their own choices on social contact, but urged people not to throw caution to the wind and said social distancing must continue in workplaces, shops and restaurants.

The U.S. government and the top fuel pipeline operator in the United States on Monday, worked to secure the network that transports nearly half of the East Coast's fuel supplies, as the group suspected of a ransomware cyberattack that caused it to shutdown last week, said it was just trying to make money. The attack on Colonial Pipeline is one of the most disruptive digital ransom schemes reported. The resulting shutdown has disrupted fuel supply across the eastern United States, triggering isolated sales restrictions at retail pumps and pushing benchmark petrol prices to a three-year high.

Calls grew for India to impose a nationwide lockdown as new coronavirus cases and deaths held close to record highs on Monday, increasing pressure on the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Many states have imposed strict lockdowns over the last month, while others have placed curbs on movement and shut cinemas, restaurants, pubs and shopping malls. But pressure is mounting on Modi to announce a nationwide lockdown as he did during the first wave of infections last year. He is battling criticism for allowing huge gatherings at a religious festival and holding large election rallies during the past two months even as cases surged.

• British Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised to tackle inequality and “level up” the country on Tuesday, with a post-pandemic raft of laws presented by Queen Elizabeth to parliament.
In a ceremony stripped back because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the queen, who wore a day dress instead of the usual robes and crown, read out the bills the government hopes to pass during the next year on everything from job creation and healthcare to stripping back post-Brexit bureaucracy.

• On Friday in the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Index and the S&P 500 were set for their steepest weekly drop since January, after stronger-than-expected inflation data, signs of labour shortage and higher commodity prices over the week raised bets the Federal Reserve would have to pare back its crisis level support.

U.S. retail sales unexpectedly stalled in April as the boost from stimulus checks faded, but an acceleration is likely in the coming months amid record savings and a reopening economy.
The Commerce Department said on Friday the unchanged reading in retail sales last month followed a 10.7% surge in March, an upward revision from the previously reported 9.7% increase. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast retail sales would rise 1.0%. Retail sales surged 51.2% on a year-on-year basis.

• Over the week, the main Global Stockmarkets were mostly down, especially in the Far East. The investment D-PIMS Portfolios were down for the week, especially the higher risk portfolios.


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Past Performance is no guarantee of, or guide to future returns.

The comments made above represent our interpretation of events and market views and are in no way a guarantee of future investment performance.