The UK government has unveiled a multi-billion-dollar plan to help young people find jobs as part of a 54 billion pound mini-budget to counter the economic shock from the coronavirus pandemic.
It announced a 2 billion pound ($3.6 billion) employment program and additional money for investment in training and apprenticeship schemes.
UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said the plan will help young people aged between 16 and 24 on social security payments to find a six-month job placement.
He also announced a short-term cut in sales tax for hospitality and tourism and an August “eat out to help out” discount scheme with the Government trying to encourage people to leave their homes and spend money.
There was also an immediate cut in stamp duty on house purchases of up to £500,000, which will stay in place until the end of March next year and a 2 billion pound grant for “green homes”.
Shares in major UK construction firms jumped.
Overall, the FTSE 100 came off its early lows and gained slightly as Mr Sunak announced the mini-budget, although it ended down 0.5 per cent at 6,156 points in a volatile session.
Tech shares rally on
In the US, stocks rose and the Nasdaq hit a record closing high as technology shares rallied amid signs of an economic rebound offsetting concerns about further coronavirus lockdowns.
Apple hit a new record high and Microsoft provided the biggest boost to the S&P 500.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.7 per cent to 26,067, the S&P 500 gained 0.8 per cent to 3,169 and the Nasdaq Composite added 1.4 per cent to 10,493.
Biogen jumped after the company said it submitted the marketing application for its experimental Alzheimer’s disease therapy.
The market surge came despite the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the US surpassing three million, affecting nearly one out of every