Share Prices & Company Research

Market News

31 Oct 2019 | 13:11

FTSE slumps on strong pound, weak company results

The FTSE 100 index, which is heavily weighted towards international companies, fell by 66 points or 0.9% in lunchtime trading this morning as the pound strengthened against the dollar and third-quarter earnings presented a mixed picture of corporate health.

The FTSE 250, which is heavily weighted towards domestic firm, was flat at 20,110 points.

Shares in Royal Dutch Shell fell by 3.7% to £22.37 after it reported CCS earnings of $4.8bn for the third quarter of 2019, lower than the same period last year.

The oil and gas giant said the result reflected lower realised oil, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and gas prices, as well as weaker realised refining and chemicals margins.

This was partly offset by significantly stronger contributions from LNG and oil products trading and optimisation as well as higher realised margins in retail and global commercial.

Meanwhile the price of Brent crude oil futures slipped back towards $60 per barrel, countering last week's gains.

Shares in British Airways owner International Consolidated Airlines rose 1% to 526p despite the firm reporting a slump in profit as pilot strikes disrupted operations, keeping a lid on revenue growth.

For the nine months ended 30 September, operating profit after exceptional items fell 24.9% to €2.5bn, while revenue increased 5.7% to €19.4bn.

Pilots from the BALPA union walked out for two days in September in a dispute over pay and benefits.

BT shares also gained 1% to 204p after it reported flat first-half profit as costs increased amid a ramp-up in investments and revenues were hurt by weaknesses in its global and enterprise businesses.

Adjusted earnings (EBITDA) fell 3% to £3,923m and capital expenditure was up £225m to £1,882m in the period, driven by increased network investment.

Lloyds Banking Group shares fell by 1.2% to 56.9p after the bank reported a sharp fall in profit as further payments for protection insurance claims in the third quarter dented growth.

In the three months ended 30 September, pre-tax profit fell 97% to £50m from £1.8bn a year earlier following an additional £1.8bn of PPI charges.

Lloyds also announced that its chief operating officer, Juan Colombas, planned to retire in July 2020.

Smith & Nephew shares dipped 2.1% to £16.79 after it reported underlying revenue growth of 4% for the third quarter of 2019.

The medical equipment manufacturer also reported continued mid-teens growth from emerging markets operations, led by a quarter of strong growth in China.

Finally, mining giant Rio Tinto reported a free cash flow of $10bn for 2019 based on current spot prices ahead of an investor seminar in London today. Share dropped 1% to £40.24.

MID-CAP MOVERS

Housebuilder Crest Nicholson saw its shares slide by 6% to 386p after warning on profit for the full year as Brexit uncertainty weighed on sales.

The company set out a plan to turn around performance, including cutting cost and trimming land sales.

Carpetright shares fell 48% to 4.74p after the cash-strapped retailer said it was in talks with Meditor concerning a possible sale of the business for just 5p per share as efforts to find £80m to turnaround the business had come up short.

Story provided by StockMarketWire.com
Get in touch today
Join Redmayne Bentley
Talk to us now about opening a new account or transferring your account from another provider
0113 243 6941
Get in touch today
Contact your local office
Contact your local office to find out more
The value of your investments and the income from them may go down as well as up, and you could get back less than you invested.
We use cookies on this site to improve your experience and help us provide you with a better website. An explanation of the cookies we use and their purpose can be found within our Cookie Policy. Your continued use of this site means you consent to the use of cookies.