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Market Wrap - Midday

FTSE ahead on soaring miners as gold rises

05 February 2016 12:02

UK equities were in positive territory to midday with several big-ticket miners leading the blue-chip winners' list as the price of gold muscled higher, followed by a string of financial, retail-related and oil issues.

To noon, FTSE 100 was up 6.77 points, or 0.11%, to 5905.53. FTSE 250 was up 74.73, or 0.46%, to 16,161.5. At 11.41am, WTI crude was at USD31.88/bbl and Brent was at USD34.49/bbl. Safe-haven gold was at USD1160/oz, up from this morning and yesterday. Europe was mixed.

Anglo American (AAL) stampeded up 9.41% to 359.18p, followed by Glencore (GLEN), up 4.74% to 104.4p, and then further back Fresnillo (FRES), up 2.26% to 801.75p. Financials chased Standard Chartered (STAN), up 4.7% to 458.03p, and RBS (RBS), up 2.69% to 248.3p. Some miners, such as Rio Tinto (RIO), down 2.02% to 1820.5p, fell.

Oilies were also appreciating. BG (BG.), up 1.13% to 1069.5p, saw its FY results hurt by lower commodity prices. Revenue and other operating income fell 16% to USD16.42bn. It was chased by BP (BP.), up 0.94% to 354.15p, both perhaps helped by the mild gain in crude.

Among retail, Kingfisher (KGF) firmed 2.47% to 327.5p, with Tesco (TSCO) adding 2.37% to 173.93p. A few more than 60 stocks gained, most by less than 1%. Consumer goods and commercial property also rose. Meantime, losers included utilities after National Grid (NG.), down 1.22% to 964.7p, plus some pharmas and tobacco stocks.


Frontier Resources (FRI), up 41.67% to 0.09p, has conditionally issued 4.75bn shares at 0.03p each to raise GBP1.4m. Proceeds will be used to provide working capital and to support the investment in new projects.

Independent Oil and Gas (IOG), up 33.33% to 8p, has entered into a conditional agreement with London Oil and Gas for the provision of a secured convertible loan facility for up to GBP10m.

Bahamas Petroleum (BPC) jumped 23.03% to 2.03p as welcome new legislation on the islands provide an upgraded and modernised framework for petroleum exploration operations and are set to guide and govern the next phase of safe and responsible hydrocarbon exploration.


German factory orders fell 0.7% in December, much worse than market expectations for a slip of 0.4% and from a 1.5% rise in November.

France's trade balance for December printed at -3.94bn euros, from -4.6bn euros previously and against forecasts for -4.5bn euros.


Wishbone Gold (WSBN) climbed 13.46% to 0.3p as it confirmed the acquisition of Precious Metals International and its subsidiary Black Sand in an all share deal. Central Rand Gold (CRND) fell 13.05% to 4.13p on raising GBP1.22m at 3.5p each. ImmuPharma (IMM), down 12.07% to 25.5p, has announced a proposed conditional fund raise of not less than GBP7.5m.

Just Eat (JE.) fattened 8.6% to 390.95p after acquiring four takeaway businesses in Spain, Italy, Brazil and Mexico for for 125m euros. It sees the acquisition to be EPS accretive in 2016 and to add GBP5m to 2017 EBITDA, and GBP10m to EBITDA in 2018.

Velocys (VLS), up 6.35% to 39.88p, said ENVIA Energy's EPC contractor has signed the final major contract for ENVIA's Oklahoma City GTL plant, which is to be located adjacent to Waste Management's East Oak landfill site.

Greka Drilling (GDL), down 6.24% to 3.68p, drilled a total of 76,690m in 2015, up 31% on the year. It drilled 62 wells, 53 in China and nine in India, from 45 in 2014.

Premier Farnell (PFL) leaped 6.71% to 105.38p as it secured the USD224.2m sale of US fire safety equipment business Akron Brass.

Faroe Petroleum (FPM), up 4.41% to 56.38p, said total average economic production for 2015 was at the upper end of guidance at about 10,530 boepd, of which about 58% was liquids and 42% gas.

On The Beach (OTB) fell 3.93% to 293p despite reporting year-on-year UK revenue growth of 26% in the four months to Jan. 31 January in a period of significant volatility caused by the recent terror attacks.

Pennant Int'l (PEN), up 3.53% to 44p, subsidiary Pennant Training Systems Ltd has been awarded a new landmark contract with one of the world's leading aerospace and defence contractors.

Other stocks in the news included Booker (BOK), Porta Communications (PTCM), OptiBiotix Health (OPTI), Grainger (GRI), Stride Gaming (STR), Teathers (TEA), Halma (HLMA), Ace Liberty and Stone (ALSP), Shaftesbury (SHB), Genel Energy (GENL), Town Centre Securities (TCSC) and Commercial International Bank (Egypt) (CBKD).

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