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Market Wrap - Midday

Miners drag on FTSE 100

20 September 2017 11:49

Weak mining stocks and a retail sales inspired bounce in the pound weighed on the FTSE 100, which dipped to 7,276 around midday.

Rio Tinto (RIO) led the sector lower, down 0.6% to £34.95. Glencore (GLEN) and Anglo American (AAL) both ticked 0.4% lower to 344.5p and £12.85.

Growth in spending on 'non-essential' items helped boost retail sales by 1% in August compared to July according to the Office for National Statistics.

Brent crude oil jumped 0.9% to $55.65 per barrel. Gold was stable at $1,306 per ounce and copper nudged 0.2% higher to $6,525 per tonne.

OVERSEAS MARKETS

Wall Street continued to perform well this week ahead of the US Federal Reserve's latest update, which will provide details on its bond holdings and on its interest rate policy.

Overnight, the Dow Jones was up 0.2% at 22,370.

FTSE 100 RISERS AND FALLERS

Home improvement retailer Kingfisher (KGF) delivered better than anticipated results with underlying pre-tax profit up 0.9% to £440m compared to broker expectations of £426m. Strong growth at Screwfix and in Poland was behind the impressive results, helping the share price jump 6.3% to 315.2p.

Engineer Babcock International (BAB) reassured investors that the introduction of the IFRS15 accounting standard is not expected to significantly impact earnings and reported in-line trading. Shares in the firm climbed 5.7% to 846p.

Rare diseases specialist Shire (SHP) was flat at £38.31 despite its Phase III study on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder with Japanese partner Shionogi & Co meeting the primary endpoint.

FTSE 250 RISERS AND FALLERS

Outsourcer Mitie (MTO) struggled on news that the loss of a top 20 contract would result in a £6m non-cash write-off. The market focused on the bad news rather than the turnaround progress as the stock was broadly unmoved at 259.9p.

Among the mid-caps, pizza delivery firm Domino's (DOM) rose 5.4% to 290p on a £15m share buyback programme.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Investors raised a glass to radio mesh networks firm CyanConnode (CYAN) after it won a purchase order worth $29m, sparking a share price rally of 5.5% to 0.1p.

Toy distributor Character Group (CCT) warned that market conditions remained 'challenging at a consumer level'. The company also said it does not have 'reliable visibility' for the vital Christmas trading period as embattled Toys 'R' Us filed for bankruptcy protection in the US and Canada. The shares fell 4.4% to 485p.

The market was not impressed with mobile services supplier The People's Operator (TPOP) announcement that it intended to seek further funding 'in the near future'. The stock slumped 14.7% on the disappointing news and half year results that revealed lower sales.

Children's behavioural health service provider Cambian (CMBN) reinstated its dividend and announced a special dividend of £50m. The market overlooked the good news, focusing on a lower operating profit of £0.3m in the first half of 2017, causing Cambian's shares to dip 3.4% to 205p.

Story provided by StockMarketWire.com

Related Company: KGF

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