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Prudential Financial, Inc (PRU) Stock Price, News, Quote

Prudential confirms leadership changes following CEO Wells departure

(Alliance News) - Prudential has confirmed that CEO Mike Wells will retire on Thursday and Mark FitzPatrick will serve as interim CEO.

FitzPatrick will become interim CEO on Friday and will retain the role while the company searches for a permanent replacement for Wells and vets internal and external candidates.

Thereafter, FitzPatrick will retire from the board and serve as a consultant for a period of time. Prudential said last month that Fitzpatrick asked the board not to consider him as permanent chief executive.

Former chief risk and compliance officer James Turner will succeed FitzPatrick as chief financial officer.

Prudential first announced Wells' departure in February and said it was looking for a new chief executive in Asia.

Wells became CEO in 2015 after first joining the insurer in 1995. Wells ran Prudential's US business Jackson Financial Inc before taking over Tidjane Thiam, which moved to banker Credit Suisse Group AG. Prudential completed its spin-off from Jackson last year, leaving the rest of the company focused on Asia and Africa.

Shares in Prudential rose 1.1% to 1,136.00 pence a share in London on Thursday.

London markets close: Banks push FTSE 100 higher after Powell speech

(Alliance News) - The FTSE 100 continued its gains on Tuesday, with financials leading the blue-chip index higher after positive comments from the Federal Reserve.

The FTSE 100 closed up 34.33 points, or 0.5%, at 7,476.72. The FTSE 250 closed up 106.04 points, or 0.5%, at 21,112.60, while AIM shares closed just 0.28 points lower at 1,037.58.

The Cboe UK 100 gained 0.2% to 742.37, the Cboe UK 250 gained 0.5% to 18,625.16 and the Cboe Small Companies rose 1.1% to 15,110.50.

In Europe, the CAC 40 in Paris rose 1.2% on Tuesday, while the DAX 40 in Frankfurt rose 1.0%.

Markets were unmoved when Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said on Monday that the U.S. central bank was prepared to raise interest rates by a larger rate than the 25-point rate hike announced last week if it was to rein in "excessive" inflation.

"If we think it's appropriate to raise the federal funds rate by more than 25 basis points in one or more sessions, we will do so," he said in remarks at an economics conference.

The Federal Reserve last week raised its benchmark interest rate for the first time since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in an attempt to contain inflationary pressures.

Powell is optimistic that the Fed can achieve that without tipping the U.S. economy into recession, an elusive goal known as a "soft landing."

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Despite the oil price shock caused by the conflict in Ukraine, he noted that "the economy is very strong today and is well positioned to deal with tighter monetary policy".

Brent crude was trading at $115.05 a barrel at the close in London on Tuesday, up from $114.84 late Monday.

"Jerome Powell's upbeat outlook for the U.S. economy continues to provide much-needed relief to worried investors... Having experienced a bit of a panic when the idea of ​​a rate hike exploded late last year, it looks like the market may be swayed by the whole thing." The view is more optimistic," said Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at online trading platform IG.

The IG analysts added: "Rising bond yields continue to support global financials, with today a turning point for the FTSE 100 financials rally following recent strength in commodity stocks."

Financials led the FTSE 100 higher on Tuesday, with Prudential up 4.1%, Lloyds up 3.3% and NatWest up 3.1%. In Frankfurt, Deutsche Bank rose 5.5%, the best performer on the DAX 40.

New York stocks closed higher in London, with the Dow up 0.6%, the S&P 500 up 0.8% and the Nasdaq Composite up 1.4%.

Powell's remarks supported the dollar. The euro was at $1.1014 against the dollar at the European close on Tuesday, compared with $1.1033 on Monday. In late Monday trade, the dollar rose to 120.55 yen versus 119.25 yen.

However, the pound rose to $1.3255 by the close in London on Tuesday, compared with $1.3192 at Monday's close, as investors focused on busy trading in the UK on Wednesday.

First up is the latest UK inflation rate as of 07:00 GMT, which is expected to accelerate to 5.9% annualised in February from 5.5% in January, according to the FXStreet consensus.

Then, as the country faces a cost-of-living crisis, Britain will hear from Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in its so-called "mini-budget". It has been suggested that the chancellor could temporarily cut fuel taxes by up to 5p a litre, and reports he is considering raising the threshold at which people start paying social security.