Hong Kong tensions end winning streak for global stock markets – business live
Rolling coverage of the latest economic and financial news, amid heightened tensions between the US and China over Hong Kong
- China pledges to ‘support’ Hong Kong’s police as US warned not to interfere
- UK says it will extend Hongkongers’ visa rights if China pursues security laws
Nationwide Building Society has seen its annual profits almost halve, in part due to the impact of hundreds of thousands of customers taking payment holidays due to the coronavirus, my colleague Mark Sweney writes.
The mortgage lender said that pre-tax profits plunged by 44% from £833m to £466m in the year to 4 April. Joe Garner, chief executive, said that 280,00 customers have so far opted to take a payment holiday which has cost the company £101m:
In the last month of our financial year all our lives have been overshadowed by the coronavirus. We are helping members in financial difficulty with payment holidays on mortgages and loans and interest-free overdraft periods.
Europe’s Stoxx 600 has been dragged lower by autos, banks, and travel & leisure stocks, and the FTSE 100 is not much different.
The worst performers including Rolls Royce and cruise company Carnival, as well as easyJet. HSBC is not too far behind either, having been hit by fears that Hong Kong’s robust financial sector could be hurt if it is included in sanctions aimed at China.