ADVFN Morning London Market Report: Thursday 16 September 2021

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London open: Stocks rise as investors eye US retail sales

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London stocks rose in early trade on Thursday, taking their cue from a positive session on Wall Street as investors awaited the release of US retail sales figures.

At 0840 BST, the FTSE 100 was up 0.4% at 7,044.81.

Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor, said: “The generally positive opening was led by some strength within cyclical shares, although the moves were unconvincing. The indices nonetheless remain ahead in the year to date, with the FTSE 100 having added 9% and the FTSE 250 14.8%.

“Even so, with the known issues now on the table and potentially priced in, the next catalysts could either come from renewed signs of a global economic bounceback, or the third quarter reporting season providing positive shocks in the first weeks of October.”

On the macroeconomic front, investors were eyeing the release of US retail sales data for August later in the day.

In equity marketsAshtead rallied as it said it annual performance would beat its previous expectations as the equipment hire company reported a 53% increase in operating profit for the first quarter.

Online trading platform IG Group was a high riser as it posted a 6% jump in first-quarter revenues, while premium drinks company C&C fizzed higher after saying it has returned to profitability as Covid restrictions have eased.

DIY retailer Wickes, which recently demerged from Travis Perkins, was trading up after saying it now expects full-year profit towards the upper end of market expectations, as it reported better-than-expected interim profits.

Hilton Food gained after it increased its interim dividend by 17% as the food packaging company reported a strong first half, driven by its Australian operation.

On the downside, Games Workshop fell as it said trading for the three months to 29 August was in line with the board’s expectations and declared a dividend, but warned over pressure on freight costs and currency exchange rates.

Homewares retailer Dunelm was under the cosh as it traded without entitlement to the dividend, while Britvic was knocked lower by a rating downgrade at Deutsche Bank.

 

Top 10 FTSE 100 Risers

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# Name Change Pct Change Cur Price
1 Easyjet Plc +3.29% +18.60 584.60
2 Rolls-royce Holdings Plc +3.24% +3.42 108.92
3 International Consolidated Airlines Group S.a. +2.67% +3.66 140.78
4 Carnival Plc +2.51% +37.00 1,510.20
5 Informa Plc +2.33% +12.00 526.40
6 Ashtead Group Plc +2.29% +134.00 5,988.00
7 Flutter Entertainment Plc +2.14% +310.00 14,780.00
8 Compass Group Plc +1.69% +24.50 1,473.00
9 Smurfit Kappa Group Plc +1.66% +68.00 4,158.00
10 Tui Ag +1.53% +4.30 284.50

 

Top 10 FTSE 100 Fallers

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# Name Change Pct Change Cur Price
1 Burberry Group Plc -2.70% -48.00 1,732.00
2 Anglo American Plc -1.83% -54.00 2,899.50
3 Rio Tinto Plc -1.71% -89.00 5,130.00
4 Antofagasta Plc -1.50% -22.00 1,444.00
5 Glencore Plc -0.98% -3.35 337.05
6 Intertek Group Plc -0.67% -36.00 5,336.00
7 Bhp Group Plc -0.56% -11.50 2,025.00
8 Hiscox Ltd -0.55% -4.80 862.40
9 Unilever Plc -0.54% -21.50 3,947.50
10 Halma Plc -0.36% -11.00 3,006.00

 

Europe open: Stocks rise after positive US session; Lagardere surges

European stocks rose in early trade on Thursday following an upbeat session on Wall Street, as attention shifted to the latest US retail sales figures due later in the day.

At 0900 BST, the benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 index, Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 were all up 0.7% at 466.91, 15,719.70 and 6,628.75, respectively.

Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com, said: “European stock markets were modestly higher on Thursday after a rebound in the US and another dip for Asian equities overnight.

“Hong Kong was down 1.7% as casino stocks fell again, and is now testing the lows struck in July and August, down about 20% from its February peak. Indebted real estate group Evergrande fell another 7%. Gold struggled to hold the $1,800 level as Treasury yields climbed a touch. The dollar is a bit stronger after yesterday’s decline.”

On the macroeconomic calendar, US August retail sales are expected to show a 0.8% monthly decline.

“But soft data would hardly dampen the mood, after Tuesday’s inflation eased worries of a too tight Federal Reserve stance,” said Swissquote analyst Ipek Ozkardeskaya

In corporate news, Lagardere shares surged 20% after Vivendi agreed to buy activist investor Amber Capital’s 17.9% stake in the French media group.

Elsewhere, London-listed equipment hire company Ashtead rallied as it said its annual performance would beat its previous expectations and reported a 53% increase in operating profit for the first quarter.

 

US close: Stocks record second positive session in last eight

Wall Street stocks closed higher on Wednesday as the Dow Jones and S&P 500 clawed back some of yesterday’s losses.

At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.68% at 34,814.39.52 and the S&P 500 was 0.85% firmer at 4,480.70, while the Nasdaq Composite came out the gate 0.82% stronger at 15,161.53.

The Dow closed 236.82 points higher on Wednesday, taking a bite out of losses recorded on Tuesday after August’s CPI reading revealed consumer-level inflation in the US slowed more quickly than expected last month.

Stocks continued their turbulent September on Wednesday, with the Dow Jones in the green, marking a second positive session out of the last eight amid rising investor concerns regarding the Covid-19 Delta variant derailing the US’ economic recovery.

On the macro front, mortgage applications were up 0.3% in the US during the week ended 10 September due to a surge in purchasing activity and a heavy decline in refinancing activity, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Elsewhere, industrial production in the US edged pasts forecasts last month on the back of higher output from factories and utilities. According to the Department of Commerce, total output increased at a month-on-month pace of 0.4% (consensus: 0.5%), pushing the annual rate of gain to 5.9%.

Still on data, manufacturing activity in the jurisdiction of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York surged in September, according to the results of a closely followed survey. The New York Fed’s regional factory index jumped from a reading of 18.3 for August to 34.3 in September, roughly doubling economists’ forecasts for a print of 17.1. A key sub-index for new orders also soared, rising from 14.8 to 33.7.

In the corporate space, Apple stock was in focus after the tech behemoth’s virtual event on Tuesday saw it unveil new versions of the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch.

No major corporate earnings were released on Wednesday.

 

Thursday newspaper round-up: Monzo, energy blackout, PwC

There are signs outside almost every pub, restaurant and hotel dotting Torquay’s harbour: Staff wanted. “It’s been packed solid busy, you can’t get a table anywhere,” said Brett Powis, owner of three hotels in the area including the Riviera and Lincombe Hall. For the hotelier, staff shortages made it harder to take full advantage of the busiest summertime boom in the Devon resort for decades. – Guardian

The digital bank Monzo is muscling in on the UK’s booming “buy now, pay later” market and will be offering its customers credit limits of up to £3,000. Monzo is one of the first UK banks to launch into the fast-growing but controversial BNPL sector, which is dominated by financial technology companies such as the industry leader Klarna and PayPal. Monzo, which has more than 5 million customers, said it had taken the “best bits” of BNPL, credit cards, loans and overdrafts to create its Monzo Flex product, which it is introducing from Thursday. – Guardian

Britain is at risk of a winter energy blackout after a fire cut off a subsea cable that supplies power from France, experts have warned. The blaze at a National Grid substation in Kent shut down an “interconnector” capable of transmitting enough electricity for 1.4m homes. – Telegraph

PwC has revealed that fewer than a fifth of its staff come from a working-class background — and they are typically paid 12 per cent less than colleagues. The accounting firm, disclosing the figures for the first time, said that 14 per cent of its 21,000 employees in Britain come from a lower socioeconomic background, which was defined as having the parent who earned the most working in a routine, manual, craft or service occupation. – The Times

One of the world’s most famous airfields and the home of Top Gear for almost two decades is to be sold by a Cambridge college to an American asset manager in a £250 million deal. Trinity, the richest of Cambridge’s 31 colleges, put Dunsfold Park in Surrey up for sale this year. Having received multiple offers, it is understood that Columbia Threadneedle, the US investment giant, has been selected as the preferred bidder after tabling an offer in the region of £200 million. It is thought that Columbia could end up paying as much as £250 million for the site. – The Times

 

 

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