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Market Wrap - Midday

FTSE down as cyber-attack prompts Reckitt Benckiser downgrade

06 July 2017 11:51

Nurofen seller Reckitt Benckiser (RB.) fell 2.2% to £75.32 after June's global cyber-attack proved to be a major headache for the company. It downgraded growth forecasts as the attack disrupted the manufacture and distribution of its products.

A stronger than expected performance at Primark bode well for its owner Associated British Foods (ABF) as it marginally improved the overall outlook for the group. Its shares advanced by 3% to £30.10.

Low cost airline EasyJet (EZJ) was down 2.2% to £13.27 despite carrying 11.3% more passengers in June compared to the same month last year.

In terms of headline market performance, the FTSE 100 was down 0.7% at 7,311.

Brent crude oil 1.3% to $48.41 per barrel. Gold advanced 0.3% to $1,225 per ounce and copper nudged 0.2% higher to $5,842 per tonne.

OVERSEAS MARKETS

On Asian markets, Japan was the biggest faller in the region with the Nikkei index closing 0.4% lower at 19,994.

A sharp drop in energy prices on Wednesday weighed on US energy stocks yesterday. The Dow Jones ended the day flat at 21,478.

In economic news, the US Federal Reserve was split about how inflation could affect the pace of future interest rate rises, according to the minutes of its latest meeting released yesterday.

FTSE 250 RISERS AND FALLERS

Bovis Homes (BVS) continued to enjoy positive momentum in the housebuilding sector following yesterday's sector rally.

The company said trading in the first half of 2017 was in line and set aside an additional £3.5m to fix issues with several of its previously built homes. Shares in the firm were up 0.3% to 972.7p.

Online delivery service Just Eat (JE.) revealed former Moneysupermarket.com (MONY) boss Peter Plumb would become its new chief executive from September. Its shares were unmoved at 671.7p.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Lloyd's of London insurer Novae (NVA) received a takeover offer from Axis Capital Holdings, valuing the company at approximately £468.6m. The stock soared 21.3% to 705.2p.

Going in the opposite direction was Blancco Technology (BLTG) as cash flow and net cash fell below market expectations after the non-payment of £3.5m owed to the company by third parties. Shares in the firm slumped 21.2% to 118.5p.

Home improvement group Entu UK (ENTU) announced it was exploring option for new long-term financing to strengthen its balance sheet as part of its strategic review. Investors were concerned and marked the stock 19.7% lower to 12.2p.

Oxford BioMedica (OXB) ticked 1% higher to 9.9p on a new gene therapy distribution deal with Novartis. This agreement built on an original distribution deal between the companies in 2014. Story provided by StockMarketWire.com

Related Company: RB.

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