London close: Stocks mixed on global economic jitters

by | Sep 26, 2023

(Sharecast News) – Stocks in London ended Tuesday on a varied note, reflecting global apprehensions around the Chinese economy and rising interest rates, while the shadow of a US credit warning from Moody’s loomed large.
The FTSE 100 saw a modest uptick, finishing 0.02% higher at 7,625.72, while the FTSE 250 shed 0.43% to close at 18,336.65.

In currencies, sterling experienced a muted, last trading down 0.33% on the dollar at $1.2171, while it saw a slight decline of 0.11% against the euro to change hands at €1.1515.

“Hawkish commentary by Fed officials mentioning one more rate hike, some $134bn of new government debt sales this week and the risk of a US government shutdown are too much for stock investors,” said IG senior market analyst Axel Rudolph.

“Global equity indices’ slip through key technical support during the seasonally weaker period of the year point to further declines.

“US new home sales have borne the brunt of rapidly rising rates and fall the most in 11 months.”

US credit rating at risk, China’s economic concerns take centre stage

In economic news, rating agency Moody’s raised alarms over the potential repercussions of a US government shutdown on the nation’s sterling triple-A credit rating.

While the immediate ramifications would not impede debt service payments, the agency said such a scenario could vividly highlight the frailty of the US’s institutional robustness and governance capabilities, especially compared to other nations boasting a similar credit rating.

On the other side of the globe, China’s economic landscape was grappling with its challenges.

Evergrande, a major player in the Chinese real estate sector, saw a significant dip in its share value for the second consecutive day.

The slide came on the heels of the company’s mainland division defaulting on a debt payment.

Mixed day for London’s major equities

On London’s equity markets, Burberry Group faced a dip of 0.71% on the heels of both Morgan Stanley and Deutsche Bank slashing their share price targets.

Close Brothers Group saw a decline of 1.88% after the merchant bank announced that its profits halved in the latter half of the year, which was attributed to provisions associated with Novitas.

Despite declaring a commendable 20% surge in its annual operating profit driven by increased volumes and enhanced pricing, Smiths Group saw its shares slipping by 3.75%.

PZ Cussons experienced a drop of 4.38%, as challenges such as rising cost inflation and operational issues in Nigeria continued to bear down on the Imperial Leather manufacturer, even though it maintained its annual guidance despite a decline in full-year profits.

Whitbread shares slid by 1.5%, influenced by Redburn’s rating downgrade from ‘neutral’ to ‘sell’.

The company owns the well-known Premier Inn chain.

On the upside, RS Group surged 5.77% after market blog Betaville’s latest insights suggested a wave of takeover speculations.

Though there was chatter about RS Group – an electrical products and components distributor – catching takeover interest, details about the interested party remained undisclosed.

Meanwhile, Barclays basked in a 3.83% jump, spurred by an upgrade to ‘overweight’ from Morgan Stanley.

Other gainers included British Land, with a 3.29% boost, Bytes Technology Group, up by 2.37%, and Redde Northgate, which appreciated by 1.05%, all following updates.

Outside the FTSE 350, Asos slid 1.5% after the fast-fashion behemoth shared that it anticipated operating profits for the entire year to land at the lower spectrum of expectations, with free cash flow poised significantly below the projected guidance.

Reporting by Josh White for

Market Movers

FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,625.72 0.02%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 18,336.65 -0.43%
techMARK (TASX) 4,340.93 -0.08%

FTSE 100 – Risers

RS Group (RS1) 749.00p 5.49%
Barclays (BARC) 159.68p 3.93%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 681.60p 3.74%
Entain (ENT) 947.40p 3.20%
Kingfisher (KGF) 223.90p 2.38%
Imperial Brands (IMB) 1,674.00p 2.10%
Next (NXT) 7,424.00p 1.53%
B&M European Value Retail S.A. (DI) (BME) 585.00p 1.53%
Associated British Foods (ABF) 2,089.00p 1.46%
M&G (MNG) 207.10p 1.37%

FTSE 100 – Fallers

Smiths Group (SMIN) 1,600.00p -3.99%
Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) 261.70p -2.86%
Spirax-Sarco Engineering (SPX) 9,242.00p -2.45%
Halma (HLMA) 1,904.50p -2.08%
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,873.50p -1.94%
Whitbread (WTB) 3,511.00p -1.82%
Pershing Square Holdings Ltd NPV (PSH) 2,980.00p -1.72%
Fresnillo (FRES) 562.60p -1.64%
Sage Group (SGE) 1,001.00p -1.57%
Diploma (DPLM) 2,974.00p -1.33%

FTSE 250 – Risers

IG Group Holdings (IGG) 663.00p 3.84%
British Land Company (BLND) 326.80p 3.39%
Wizz Air Holdings (WIZZ) 1,917.50p 3.34%
Bytes Technology Group (BYIT) 510.00p 2.37%
TP Icap Group (TCAP) 170.00p 1.86%
Supermarket Income Reit (SUPR) 79.80p 1.79%
Ascential (ASCL) 196.00p 1.77%
Bellway (BWY) 2,328.00p 1.57%
Britvic (BVIC) 882.50p 1.55%
Intermediate Capital Group (ICP) 1,340.00p 1.52%

FTSE 250 – Fallers

Coats Group (COA) 73.90p -6.57%
Future (FUTR) 712.00p -5.57%
PZ Cussons (PZC) 151.80p -5.13%
Vesuvius (VSVS) 417.40p -4.88%
Kainos Group (KNOS) 1,159.00p -4.69%
Impax Environmental Markets (IEM) 358.00p -4.15%
AJ Bell (AJB) 282.20p -4.08%
NCC Group (NCC) 100.40p -3.65%
TUI AG Reg Shs (DI) (TUI) 436.80p -3.45%
Foresight Group Holdings Limited NPV (FSG) 463.00p -3.34%

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