The FTSE 100 was set for a sharp fall today after wild gyrations on Wall Street last night hit global markets this morning.
Asian shares tumbled sharply, following US markets' rocky session, with China down more than 2% and Japan and Australia down more than 1%.
The FTSE was set to open down 47 points at 6571.3 - a fall of 0.7% - according to prices being quoted before the market opened on IG Index.
Hong Kong also fell sharply this morning - down 2% - with the stock exchange operator Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing tumbling more than 9% at one point.
HKEX, which owns the London Metals Exchange, tumbled on a local media report the territory would be increasing stamp duty.
While that would be bad for HKEX, it could benefit London significantly, because Hong Kong has won a lot of business from tech companies floating there which the London Stock Exchange would keenly like to gain.
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Wall Street triggered the selling yesterday as tech stocks sold off sharply, leaving the tech-rich Nasdaq index down nearly 4% at one point and the S&P 500 off nearly 2%.
Those tumbles were reversed after Federal Reserve chairman Jay Powell said he had no plans to tighten America's super easy monetary policy with interest rate rises or the like. US share indices ended up slightly higher by the close of play.
London is also expected to be weaker because of the dominance of oil stocks on the FTSE 100, and the price of crude was having a slightly weaker day.
Also, the pound has been rising on reports Chancellor Rishi Sunak could extend stamp duty holidays on property deals by another three months, propping up the housing market further.
Sterling is now at its highest level since April 2018, also still being helped by the longer term factor of the government's Christmas Eve Brexit deal, which assuaged fears of a damaging no-deal end to the transition period.
The pound's strength hits multinational firms' profits and share prices when overseas earnings are translated back into sterling.