Prospect of Higher Interest Rates Keeps Financial Stocks Rising

Financial stocks continued to keep the major U.S. indices on positive ground this afternoon, with the NYSE Financial Sector Index adding nearly 1.1% while financial companies in the S&P 500 Index were posting a 0.9% gain.

In company news, GAIN Capital Holdings (GCAP) tumbled Tuesday despite assurances by the trading-services company it approves of proposed changes by UK financial watchdogs intended to improve consumer protections in foreign currency and contracts-for-difference markets.

GAIN said it already sets leverage ratios for its retail investors at similar levels to those proposed by the Financial Conduct Authority. Several other FCA proposals with company practices, it said, adding they likely will not require significant changes to its operations.

But other UK-based spreadbetting firms also took hits during London trading today, including a 22% drop for rival IG Croup after analysts at Liberium Capital warned the measures could take a big bite out of its future revenues. GAIN also operates a retail futures business in the United States in addition to an international institutional trading business – neither unit would be affected by the FCA rule changes.

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