Investor confidence falls as prospect of rate hike looms

The market may be riding high, but Hargreaves Lansdown says investors are feeling gloomy. Picture: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images
The market may be riding high, but Hargreaves Lansdown says investors are feeling gloomy. Picture: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images
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Investor confidence is “scraping along pretty close to the bottom of the barrel”, while expectations of an interest rate rise have leapt, according to new data from Hargreaves Lansdown.

The investment specialist said its investor confidence index fell sharply in July, dropping a fifth to 69 points, as sentiment adjusted to the UK’s new political situation and Brexit negotiations starting. The long-term average level for the index is 99.

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Expectations of an interest rate rise were up “significantly”, with 44 per cent of investors now believing there will be an increase in the next six months, up from 16 per cent in June.

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Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “Investor confidence is scraping along pretty close to the bottom of the barrel right now, in stark contrast to the stock market, which is riding high.”

However, he said the “silver lining” of the drag on confidence is the suggestion that markets “are not being driven by reckless abandon”.

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