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US $900B COVID Stimulus, Brexit Deal Reached and New Coronavirus Strain

Weekly Market Update 25 Dec 2020 – US $900B COVID Stimulus, Brexit Deal Reached and New Coronavirus Strain

1. Congress finally agreed to a US$900B coronavirus relief package, offering a lifeline to millions of Americans who depend on the jobless benefits. While this alone may not be sufficient to revive the economy, it is seen as a positive development after months of negotiations. Despite the positivity, fears of the mutant coronavirus strain across the Atlantic is adding a dampener on the market

2. A Brexit deal was reached just in time for Christmas, though EU member states will still have to approve it, which is the most likely outcome, considering the alternative being a disorderly no-deal Brexit. While both EU and UK has touted the deal as a win for both parties, the devil is in the details; UK financial services will cease to enjoy blanket access to EU’s single market, professional qualifications will no longer be mutually recognized and freedom of movement between both EU and UK will end in less than a week

3. Compounding the woes of ordinary Britons is the new coronavirus strain that was found in UK, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson shared that it is 70% more infectious, resulting in stricter restrictions imposed across the country including London. Countries around the world including Germany, France and Canada has banned flights from the UK in fear of the viral spread

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