UK city news : Lloyds Banking Group, RBS, Tesco, British Gas
12/01/2012 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 245 words
As Chinese inflation appeared to slow at quickest pace in more than a year, the UK stock market has given a good showing in first two trading weeks of the new year with FTSE 100 residing at 5680 by lunch.
The UK banks showed signs of life as Royal Bank of Scotland RBS started its de-risk process in investment and wholesale banking activities. The shares were duly up 8.2% despite the relately dire impact of 3,500 jobs lost nationwide.
Lloyds Banking Group and Barclays were also up on wider news that the euro-induced credit crunch environment for European banking operations may be easing as Eurozone watered down tough fiscal rules.
There is also an energy price war gathering pace as pressure mounts for cuts in energy bills and British Gas is reported to be cutting electricity prices by 5%.
In retailing, Tesco shares were down nearly 10% after the UK's leading supermarket advised that full-year trading profit growth will be at the low end of the range of expectations.
Cycles retailer Halfords reported a fall in retail sales in the third quarter while Home Retail Group reported weak Christmas sales for Argos with like-for-like sales down 8.8% in the 18 weeks to the end of December.
Industrial services firm Cape reported that higher levels of activity was being seen across most of its business areas with strong revenue growth in the third quarter carried through to end of year.
UK city news : Vodafone, Lloyds Banking Group, easyJet, Deltex Medical
06/01/2012 - Broker Recommendations, Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 300 words
The UK stock market has enjoyed a strong session in the first week back since new year. The FTSE 100 was up 0.86% just after lunch as buyers were again prepared to target oversold stocks.
Euro pain may endure into 2013 after IMF Chief Christine Lagarde indicated she expects the enbattled currency to see out 2012. 'The Euro its a young currency and its a solid one as well' says an optimistic Legarde.
In banking, latest news is that Lloyds Banking Group will remain loss-making this year as Barclays estimates it will mark down its mortgage portfolio by a further £5bn in 2012 while RBS expects a further £1bn of mortgage impairments.
In rare good news for the Travel sector, low-cost airline easyJet has reported that passenger figures in December were actually up 13.1% up on previous year although figures may be skewed by holiday makers delaying summer holidays to coincide with a break to the Christmas tradition.
In mining, shareholders in West African Minerals have approved acquisition of Ferrum Resources while First Quantum Minerals has settled a dispute with ENRC - Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation and agreed to dispose of residual assets and settle all claims over operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
One of the Sun newspapers tips for 2012 Deltex Medical Group says it has foundation in place to underpin long term and accelerating growth. Chairman Nigel Keen added that 'Deltex Medical enters 2012 with considerable confidence and growing traction in a number of key markets'.
Meanwhile, income stock favorite Vodafone is back on the buy lists after Goldman Sachs upgrades the mobile phone giant to buy from neutral with target price 245p from 197p. Oriel Securities also started coverage by setting 'buy' with target price 230p.
UK city news : Desire Petroleum, Rockhopper Exploration, BG Group
30/12/2011 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 282 words
Investors wishing to make any share transactions should remember get orders in by lunchtime.
London Stock Exchange has discretion to shut trading down early if there is very little global trade and markets should be expected to close in early afternoon.
Investors continue to be nervous of unresolved Eurozone issues. Leading bank stocks Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group have shown little likelyhood, since Christmas, to rally, at least on current news.
Shares in BG Group was notably in demand, 3.2% at time of writing, after news that one of its assets in Brazil, Petrobras, is close to production.
In mining, Condor Resources revealed a 29% increase JORC resource at its Nicaragua-based La India project at 5.6g/t.
Range Resources announced that it has drilled and logged its Morne Diablo development well in Trinidad. The well is now being completed for early production, expected within the next week.
North Falkland oil explorer Desire Petroleum and operator Rockhopper Exploration announced that coring and logging operations at its 14/15-4z well have been successfully completed with further news of viability expected in coming weeks.
Oil opportunity mapping firm Vialogy reported a half year loss of £2,389,096 in its interim report to 30 September 2011.
Chairman Terry Bond said the results themselves mask the advances made during the period saying the firm has been 'in continuous detailed discussions with a number of global oil and gas operators'.
'We are in advanced talks with multinational E&P organisations on three continents. Client restrictions prohibit us from naming companies without permission, at least until specific project contracts are signed' added Terry Bond.
UK city news : Thomas Cook, Supergroup, Logica, BG Group
14/12/2011 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 237 words
The UK stock market was treading water in the run up to lunchtime, even after the Euro closed at an eleven month low against USD yesterday. The FTSE 100 was just in the blue, up 0.11% at mid-day.
As Thomas Cook revealed slightly better than expected revenue at £9.8bn, against forecasts of £9.2bn, the long standing travel firm also announced that it intends to close 200 shops in UK in a drive to reduce its debt.
Thomas Cook reported underlying profit before tax of £175m for the company year to the end of September, an improvement also on expectation of £168.5m although still significantly down from £248m in the year before.
IT firm Logica has announced that it is cutting 1300 jobs as it restructures its business for the tough economic climate. Logica added that many clients are delaying short term and discretionary expenditure.
Clothing firm Supergroup reported that revenues have risen 51% to £136.1m from £90.3m the previous year as Supergroup's warehousing problems were resolved with a profit impact put at £8.8m for companies full-year.
Energy firm BG Group said that agreement has been reached for Kazakhstan's KazMunaiGas to acquire a 10% interest in the Karachaganak gas-condensate field project.
Meanwhile satellite operator Avanti Communications announced further contracts with Bentley Walker for bandwidth serving customers in Iraq, on the HYLAS 2 satellite scheduled for launch in Q2 2012.
UK city news : Mothercare, Lloyds Banking Group, CSR Group
12/12/2011 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 227 words
Despite the news of the UK veto in Europe, the UK stock market barely stirred at opening today. Traders seem to have started early for Christmas as FTSE 100 resided a parsimonious 0.44% in the red.
Sellers returned for Lloyds Banking Group with the shares down 6.53% while Royal Bank of Scotland Group recovered an earlier fall to sit 4.76% in the red at lunchtime.
The sellers were reacting to a latest FSA report that highlighted seven factors that contributed to the banks need for UK taxpayers capital support although FSA also accepted flaws in its own supervisory regime.
Mothercare enjoyed buying activity on the back of bid speculation reported in the weekend press with private equity group Cinven, who currently owns Pizza Express said to be eying the opportunity.
Computer chip firm CSR announced that it will discontinuing investment in digital television chip and silicon tuners products, hoping to save $60m of operating costs.
Forbidden Technologies revealed that it had licensed its FORscene Cloud editing platform to YouTube in a larger integrated system where YouTube will use the platform to support remote video editing and publishing.
Meanwhile, despite bad news on UK house prices the Council of Mortgage Lenders claimed the low interest rate environment has made monthly mortgage payments for first-time buyers the most affordable for nearly eight years.
UK city news : S&P Eurozone rating, Wolseley, Xstrata, house prices
06/12/2011 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 260 words
The UK stock market has demonstrated resilience at opening today, after news overnight of S&P triple A credit rating warnings to most countries in eurozone.
The FTSE 100 was holding a small decline 0.44% at 2546 after recovering larger losses at opening.
Heating and plumbing group Wolseley have bucked the national trend to report revenue growth of 5% at £3.641bn in the first quarter to end-October, over the similar period last year. Adjusted net debt on the books was £587m as the firms trading profit came in 16% ahead at £185m.
Greetings card firm International Greetings reported sales were up 6% to £110.3m in the half-year to end-Sept from £104.5m in 2010, as profit before tax came in up 50% to £3.2m from £2.1m in 2010.
In mining Anglo American has go-ahead for its the Grosvenor project in the Bowen Basin of Queensland, Australia. The operation is for 5m tonne per annum coal extraction operation with Capital expenditure expected to be $1.7bn.
Fellow miner Xstrata has increased its mineral resource estimate for projects in southern Peru and Argentina.
Chief executive Charlie Sartain commented that its expanding mineral resource base in South America 'lays foundations' for a growth programme to grow copper production by more than 50% by the end 2014.
Meanwhile, house prices fell a further 0.9% in November according to mortgage lender Halifax, although the bellweather housing trend indicator also expects that the housing market will hold steady in the coming months.
Standard and Poor’s warn Germany and eurozone over triple A ratings.
05/12/2011 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 102 words
In breaking news, the UK TV Channel Four have reported that six European countries, including Germany risk loosing S&P triple A credit ratings.
News was filtering into online virtual news domains at 19.30 on Monday that Germany and five other triple A countries put on notice.
According to the report, Standard and Poor’s have warned Germany and the five other triple A members of the eurozone that they currently risk having their top-notch ratings downgraded.
The Dow maintained a gain of 72 points up 0.59% as Gold fell by 25 points or 1.55%. USD/EUR fell from 1.346 to 1.340.
UK city news : TUI Travel, Lloyds Banking Group, Firestone Diamonds
05/12/2011 - Stockmarket Reports - 0 Comments - 276 words
The UK stockmarket has maintained positive ground this morning, largely due to the banks, as Lloyds Banking Group clawed back another 9.52% after recent sustained selling. The FTSE 100 was up 0.45% at 5589 at lunchtime.
TUI Travel brought some cheer back to the travel sector, after the recent woes reported by Thomas Cook. Tui indicated a 25% increase in annual pre-tax profit this morning, although the outlook for bookings was seen to be slowing.
Manufacturer of ingredients for flavours, fragrance and cosmetics, Treatt has reported that group revenue increased by 18% to £74.5 million from £63.3 million in 2010 as operating profit came in up by 40% to £6.9 million.
Carillion has won a £395m contract in Qatar in a joint venture with Qatar Building Co, for a major phase of the Msheireb Downtown Doha project developed by Msheireb Properties.
Gulfsands Petroleum revealed that it is reviewing operations in Syria following the EU Council's decision to impose additional sanctions on the country.
In mining, Firestone Diamonds has reported that it has sold 47,576 carats of diamonds for $2.8m. Firestone also noted that while prices have fallen by around 30% from their highs in July, stability had returned to the market with growing demand from China.
Vatukoula Gold Mines has reported a delivered increased by 40% in underground ore, compared to last year with company now on target for projected tonnages.
Meanwhile, a subsidiary of Gitanjali Gems, Aston Luxury has taken over Hong Kong-based Crown Aim jewellery distributor that serves China, Japan, the US, the Middle East and Europe also with manufacturing units in China.