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Market Wrap - Midday

French election sparks global relief rally

24 April 2017 11:58

Global markets reacted positively to the results of the first round of voting in French presidential elections, as Emmanuel Macron came out on top.

Despite right-wing populist candidate Marine Le Pen also reaching the second round, Macron was widely tipped to dominate in the final run-off on 7 May.

The euro also surged and supported stocks with exposure to the currency such as DIY retailer Kingfisher (KGF).

The FTSE 100 rallied 1.8% to 7,245 as financial stocks Barclays (BARC) and Standard Chartered (STAN) both advanced by over 4.3%.

High street banks Lloyds (LLOY) and Natwest owner Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) made smaller gains of 2.3%.

Brent crude oil slipped 0.9% higher to $52.43 per barrel, while copper was stable at $5,599 per tonne.


Asian markets enjoyed a good start to the week including the Nikkei 225 up 1.4% and the Hang Seng advancing by 0.4%. The only exception was China's SSE Composite as regulators warned they would clamp down on risker financing in the country.


A 1% decline in the price of gold dragged down miner Randgold Resources (RRS) by 2% to £69. The company also confirmed multiple opportunities for extending the life of its Tongon gold mine operation beyond its four-year horizon.

Elsewhere in the mining sector Anglo American (AAL) delivered a strong operational performance in its first quarter.


Kennedy Wilson Europe Real Estate (KWE) was hot property following a recommended all-share tie-up with Kennedy-Wilson (KWH).

Shareholders at KWE would be entitled to receive 0.667 new KWH shares for each KWE share, under the terms of the deal.

Diamond miner Petra Diamonds (PDL) sparkled at 128.7p as it maintained full year production guidance after a steady third quarter performance.


Luxury shoe brand Jimmy Choo (CHOO) announced a strategic review to explore ways of maximising value for shareholders including a potential sale of the company. It listed in October 2014 with an issue price of 140p. The market was supportive of the potential sale as the stock jumped 9.2% to 184p.

Israeli investor Teddy Sagi said he would take North London property group Market Tech (MKT) private at 188p a share. Shares in the holding company catapulted 27.6% to 186p.

Five-a-side football provider Goals Soccer Centres (GOAL) confirmed media speculation regarding a possible merger with rival Powerleague.

Former BP (BP.) chief Tony Hayward said he would leave troubled Kurdistan operation Genel Energy (GENL) in June.

Galantas Gold (GAL) halted development at its Omagh gold mine after being notified by Northern Ireland police they would not provide anti-terrorism cover for its blasting operations. Its shares crashed by 28.7% to 4.9p.

Self-storage provider Lok'nStore (LOK) reported a decent set of half-year numbers, but investors were took profit following a strong run. The stock fell 4.3% to 445p.

Biome Technologies (BIOM) continued to make positive progress with its strategy and was confident in its outlook for the rest of 2017, triggering a rise of 14% to 148p.

Investors cheered big data business WANdisco's (WAND) largest contract with a major financial services multinational, valued at approximately $4.1m.

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