US Federal Reserve cuts interest rates by a quarter point: as it happened

5) Oil price lurches lower as Saudis claim quick recovery from attacks: Global oil markets made an abrupt U-turn yesterday as crude prices fell on hopes that Saudi Arabia could bounce back far more quickly than feared from the drone attacks which crippled production.

What happened overnight

Oil prices cooled on Wednesday as Saudi Arabia said full oil production would be restored by month’s end while caution ahead of an expected US interest rate cut kept wider financial markets in tight ranges.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.13pc while Japan’s Nikkei was flat. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index inched up 7.29 points to 26,797.53 by the break.

Wall Street shares ticked up a tad on Tuesday with the S&P 500 gaining 0.26pc.

Brent crude futures dipped 0.1pc to $64.50 a barrel, having conceded more than 60pc of their gains made after the weekend attack on Saudi oil facilities.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude lost 0.5pc to $59.06 per barrel, compared to four-month peak of $68.38 marked on Monday.

Coming up today

Kingfisher, which owns a plethora of home-improvement brands and is perhaps best known as owner of B&Q, will report first-half results on Wednesday. Jefferies analysts say they hope for “greater clarity” from the company on its troubled French operations. They say the company could become a target for takeover.

Interim results: Accesso, Kingfisher, Pendragon 

Economics: Inflation, PPI, house price index (UK), inflation (eurozone), mortgage application and Federal Reserve interest rates (US)  

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