(Sharecast News) – London stocks were still firmer by midday on Thursday as investors cheered better-than-expected results from US chip designer Nvidia and looked to the start of the Jackson Holy Symposium.
The FTSE 100 was up 0.4% at 7,346.23.
Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said: “After knock-out results from US tech outfit Nvidia overnight the FTSE 100 enjoyed a broad-based rally on Thursday morning.
“The next test of market confidence will be over the coming days as we get information from the Jackson Hole Economic Symposium in Wyoming. Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell is set to address the summit of central bankers and finance ministers on Friday and his words will be closely monitored for any hints on the future direction of US interest rates.”
On home shores, the latest survey from the Confederation of British Industry showed that retail sales fell in August at their fastest rate in more 30 months, with future prospects not looking much better amid the cost-of-living crisis.
The CBI’s monthly balance of retail sales fell to -44 in the year to August from -25 in July. Expectations for the month ahead improved to -21 from -32.
“Against a backdrop of rising interest rates and weak demand, retailers foresee cuts to investment over the next year, while employment is expected to fall again next month,” CBI economist Martin Sartorius said.
Retailers expect to reduce investment in the next 12 months (compared to the past 12), but to a lesser extent than in May, with a balance of -25% from -43%.
In equity markets, Liontrust Asset Management surged as it emerged that its takeover bid for GAM had liked failed, after the asset manager failed to win enough backing from its shareholders.
Intertek gained after saying it had bought US-based PlayerLync Holdings for an undisclosed sum.
On the downside, Harbour Energy was weaker after the North Sea oil and gas producer trimmed annual production and capital expenditure forecasts due to drilling delays at its Beryl operations. It also posted a drop in half-year pre-tax profit to $429m from $1.49bn a year earlier, due to higher taxes after the government imposed a windfall levy on energy companies.
Recruiter Hays lost ground as it lifted its full-year dividend and announced a special payout to shareholders, but gave a gloomy outlook and reported a drop in annual profits.
Building materials group CRH was also down after half-year results.
Aviva, Legal & General, Hammerson, Ibstock, St James’s Place, Auto Trader, Shaftesbury and OSB all fell as they traded without entitlement to the dividend.
FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,346.23 0.35%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 18,299.67 0.40%
techMARK (TASX) 4,245.82 0.30%
FTSE 100 – Risers
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 139.90p 5.07%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 757.60p 2.71%
Croda International (CRDA) 5,418.00p 2.19%
Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) 205.90p 2.03%
Frasers Group (FRAS) 797.50p 1.66%
Beazley (BEZ) 543.00p 1.59%
BAE Systems (BA.) 996.40p 1.57%
Airtel Africa (AAF) 110.40p 1.56%
Fresnillo (FRES) 561.60p 1.56%
Scottish Mortgage Inv Trust (SMT) 673.80p 1.48%
FTSE 100 – Fallers
CRH (CDI) (CRH) 4,402.00p -2.50%
Aviva (AV.) 371.70p -2.34%
Legal & General Group (LGEN) 215.20p -2.18%
Mondi (MNDI) 1,262.00p -1.41%
BT Group (BT.A) 113.25p -0.88%
Land Securities Group (LAND) 591.80p -0.87%
St James’s Place (STJ) 865.40p -0.87%
Whitbread (WTB) 3,408.00p -0.70%
Auto Trader Group (AUTO) 594.80p -0.67%
Glencore (GLEN) 430.50p -0.61%
FTSE 250 – Risers
Liontrust Asset Management (LIO) 677.00p 12.27%
Watches of Switzerland Group (WOSG) 717.00p 4.14%
Molten Ventures (GROW) 241.60p 3.60%
LXI Reit (LXI) 92.60p 3.18%
Target Healthcare Reit Ltd (THRL) 71.40p 2.88%
Darktrace (DARK) 349.00p 2.86%
Future (FUTR) 756.50p 2.65%
VinaCapital Vietnam Opportunity Fund Ltd. (VOF) 440.00p 2.56%
Warehouse Reit (WHR) 84.40p 2.43%
NB Private Equity Partners Ltd. (NBPE) 1,530.00p 2.41%
FTSE 250 – Fallers
Ferrexpo (FXPO) 76.40p -4.32%
OSB Group (OSB) 349.60p -3.27%
TUI AG Reg Shs (DI) (TUI) 498.80p -2.48%
Ibstock (IBST) 146.10p -2.27%
Wizz Air Holdings (WIZZ) 2,266.00p -2.20%
Ithaca Energy (ITH) 152.20p -1.81%
RHI Magnesita N.V. (DI) (RHIM) 2,776.00p -1.77%
FirstGroup (FGP) 139.90p -1.76%
Henderson Smaller Companies Inv Trust (HSL) 706.00p -1.67%
Shaftesbury Capital (SHC) 118.20p -1.66%