Important information: The value of investments and the income from them, can go down as well as up, so you may get back less than you invest.

AFTER a week in which the Dow Jones recorded its first eight-week losing streak since 1923, the big question is whether this is the week US markets officially moves into bear market territory. Last week the S&P 500 closed around 19% below its record, with a 20% decline since the start of the year regarded as the technical beginning of a bear market.

When Wall Street sneezes, London catches cold, or so the saying goes, so if Wall Street is on the brink of a cycle in which share prices are caught in a prolonged fall, the worry is that it could wreak havoc for UK investors.

Here in the UK the week has started with the market in relatively upbeat mood though, after a week that saw the blue-chip FTSE 100 and the more domestically oriented FTSE 250 mark losses.

The issue though is whether any market rally stands any chance of being sustained until the causes of the turmoil are resolved. What that probably needs is China reopening, Russia withdrawing from Ukraine and the thorny issue of rising inflation effectively tackled.

While last week’s UK retail figures were pleasantly upbeat, a flurry of results from the sector this week will tell us what’s happening away from the beer and BBQ bank holiday spending that appears to have been propping up the numbers.

B&Q and Screwfix owner Kingfisher is first out the gate and has pleased with the full year on target, despite a drop in first quarter sales. Marks & Spencer and Pets at Home are two more reporting during this week. They will be closely watched following the mixed retail data last Friday and the record low for UK consumer confidence.

On the UK results scene we also have a slew of utilities companies reporting, which are usually a popular choice with investors during times of market stress. Look out for figures from power company SSE along with water companies Severn Trent and United Utilities.

Elsewhere food and holidays are themes, with meat producers Cranswick and Hilton, along with beach holidays specialist On The Beach and airport cafe operator SSP.

The World Economic Forum is underway in Davos, with about 2,500 business leaders, politicians and experts gathered together for the event, for the first time since January 2020. No doubt the war in Ukraine, the energy crisis and the brewing economic challenges will be at the top of the agenda.

Speaking of economics, this week we also get the last macroeconomic nuggets of the month, with flash PMI surveys and a closely watched Federal Reserve update. Central banks will be a major focus for investors, with minutes from the US Federal Reserve’s latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting due on Wednesday. This will give us further insight into the state of the US economy with the publication of first-quarter gross domestic product data.

And finally, closer to home, the UK government will provide an update on its finances for the year to April on Tuesday with higher rates of inflation likely to have pushed up the cost of interest payments on debt.

Important information: Investors should note that the views expressed may no longer be current and may have already been acted upon. Overseas investments will be affected by movements in currency exchange rates. Investments in emerging markets can be more volatile than other more developed markets. Reference to specific securities should not be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell these securities and is included for the purposes of illustration only.This information is not a personal recommendation for any particular investment. If you are unsure about the suitability of an investment you should speak to one of Fidelity’s advisers or an authorised financial adviser of your choice.

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