Share Prices & Company Research

Market News

29 Nov 2018 | 09:02

FTSE gains on potential pause on US interest rate hikes

UK equities followed Wall Street higher after Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell said he may consider pausing interest rate hikes in 2019.

The FTSE 100 rose 0.8% to 7,060 as investors focused on the news instead of the Bank of England's warning that a no-deal Brexit could sink the UK into recession.

Brent crude oil dropped 1.3% to $58 per barrel.


Real estate investment trust Intu Properties crashed 36.6% to 122p after a consortium backed by Peel Group, Olayan and Brookfield Property walked away from a £2.9bn deal to take the company private.

Shares in miner Rio Tinto climbed 1.6% to £36.22 after revealing it will develop its most technologically advanced mine after the approval of a $2.6bn investment in the Koodaideri iron ore mine in Western Australia.

Equipment rental giant Ashtead announced Geoff Drabble will step down as chief executive on 1 May, and retire from the group on 30 November 2019. Investors marked the shares 2.8% higher to £17.76.

At consumer goods colossus Unilever, there was also change at the top after CEO Paul Polman announced his retirement from the company, leaving the stock broadly unmoved at £42.86.

Pub operator Greene King reported Christmas bookings were well ahead of last year with first-half profits rising thanks to a 'strong' performance in Pub Company and Brewing & Brands. Shares in Greene King fizzed 5.4% higher to 535p.

Payment services specialist Paypoint sparked 4.5% to 831p after pre-tax profit increased 4% to £25.2m in the six months to 30 September, partially driven by an improvement in VAT recovery.

Used car marketplace BCA Marketplace revealed more vehicles sales at higher prices helped pre-tax profit accelerate 30.9% to £45.7.9m in the half year to 30 September. Despite the good news, the shares reversed 2.9% to 214.5p.


OptiBiotix Health rose 2.1% to 95.5p on an exclusive license deal allowing Nutrilinea to produce, package, and supply SlimBiome Medical in Europe.

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