On Monday preliminary results from a new vaccine produced by Pfizer and BioNTech found it can prevent 90 percent of people from catching COVID-19. The companies are seeking emergency approval to begin administering the vaccination at the end of the month.

Positive vaccination news has helped mitigate the market impact of rising coronavirus cases in Europe and North America.

By 6am UK time the Japanese Nikkei 225 had risen by 1.75 points.

Rodrigo Catril, a strategist at the National Australia Bank, said: “A rotation theme remains evident in equity markets.

“Big tech, which has benefited from our virus-driven change in behaviour, is now falling out of favour while small-cap stocks and those that have been most affected by social distancing restrictions have outperformed.”

In the US the blue-chip Dow Jones, with a strong representation of industrial shares, is up this week by nearly 4 percent.

However the more tech-dominated Nasdaq has lost almost the same amount.

On Monday nearly $2trillion (£1.5trillion) changed hands in one of the busiest days of trading since the coronavirus pandemic struck.


8.00am update: Wetherspoon boss lashes out at lockdown rules

JD Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin has lashed out at “baffling and confusing” coronavirus restrictions as the pub chain revealed that England’s second national lockdown will cost it around £14 million.

Mr Martin’s latest attack on government measures came as Wetherspoon reported a 27.6% plunge in first-quarter sales for the 15 weeks to November 8 following the introduction of the 10pm curfew.

It added it will burn through around £14 million while its pubs are forced to close in the second lockdown.

Mr Martin, who is chairman of Wetherspoon, said: “For any pub or restaurant company trading in different parts of the UK, and for customers generally, the constantly changing national and local regulations, combined with geographical areas moving from one tier to another in the different jurisdictions, are baffling and confusing.”

6.30am update: JPMorgan expects S&P 500 to hit 4,000 in early next year

Banking giant JPMorgan has said they expect the S&P 500 to hit 4,000 “by early next year” before rising to 4,500 by the end of 2021. 

In a statement they said: “The equity market is facing one of the best backdrops for sustained gains in years. 

“After a prolonged period of elevated risks (global trade war, COVID-19 pandemic, US election uncertainty, etc.), the outlook is significantly clearing up, especially with news of a highly effective COVID-19 vaccine. 

“We expected an imminent vaccine outcome and a rotation out of COVID-19 beneficiaries/momentum and into epicenter/value stocks.” 

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