Global markets shaken by US political turmoil

Events unfolding on the US political scene have given markets pause for thought as many equity markets continue to fall for a second day, though in the US equity futures are suggesting yesterday's sharp fall has been stemmed for now. The news that President Trump may have requested ex-FBI director, James Comey, to drop investigations into possible ties between his campaign and Russia has seen markets favour safe haven assets such as government debt and gold. This reaction is a reflection of growing concerns that Trump's pro-business policies, such as lowering tax, may be stalled yet again – or in the worst case, fail to reach fruition. European equity markets were particularly hard hit by US political turmoil after strong gains as of late, and today the UK's FTSE All Share continues to extend losses, compounded by a strengthening pound in light of surprisingly positive retail sales data. For the first time since last September, Sterling is trading above $1.30 against the US dollar.