London stock market surges 3%

LONDON (AFP/APP): The London stock market surged by more than three percent on Monday, the first trading day since Britain last week left the European Union’s single market and customs union.

After accelerating early gains, the benchmark FTSE 100 index dipped slightly to 5,544.60 points, a gain of 2.9 percent.

The UK formally left the EU on January 31, 2020 but remained in a year-long transition as both sides negotiated a post-Brexit trade deal which was sealed only on Christmas Eve.

“The FTSE 100 is kicking off 2021 in style, with the headline UK market enjoying an impressive 3.0 percent gain in early trade,” said IG analyst Joshua Mahony.

“With Brexit finally here, there are precious few signs of initial difficulties.”

Customs border checks have returned for the first time in decades, and despite the free-trade deal allowing Britain continued access to Europe’s nearly 450 million consumers, queues and disruption from additional paperwork are expected.