London open: Stocks gain as miners rally

by | Jul 20, 2023

(Sharecast News) – London stocks rose in early trade on Thursday, albeit gains were much more muted than in the previous session, when a softer-than-expected UK inflation print saw the top-flight index enjoy its best day of the year so far.
At 0845 BST, the FTSE 100 was up 0.3%, having closed 1.8% higher on Wednesday.

Susannah Streeter, head of money and markets at Hargreaves Lansdown, said the FTSE had opened higher as miners were boosted by expectations of Chinese stimulus.

“Oil prices have steadied around $79 a barrel amid expectations of lower demand in China, as investors still waiting for more detail about what further economic stimulus from Chinese authorities will look like,” she said. “The expectation that levers will be pulled to boost domestic demand across the world’s second largest economy has helped push up commodity stocks, which are among the biggest gainers on the FTSE 100 in early trade.”

Earlier, the People’s Bank of China announced that it was keeping the one-year loan prime rate unchanged at 3.5% and the five-year rate at 4.2%.

Pantheon Macroeconomics said: “This was in line with expectations, after the PBoC held the medium-term lending facility rate steady earlier this month, and the Bank has been fending off currency pressure.”

In equity markets, heavily-weighted mining stocks were the standout performers, with Anglo American, Glencore, Antofagasta and Rio Tinto all up. Anglo American was also in focus after it said that first-half production had grown 42%.

M&G advanced after saying it remained on track to meet its financial targets, despite adopting new accountancy standards.

Homeware retailer Dunelm rallied as it said full-year profit was set to be “slightly ahead” of market expectations after continued robust sales in the fourth quarter.

Premier Foods was in the black after the Mr Kipling and OXO owner said full-year trading profit was set to be at the top end of market expectations as it posted a jump in first-quarter sales.

Babcock and IG Group also gained after results.

On the downside, Ninety One, Pennon and Bytes Technology all fell as they traded without entitlement to the dividend.

Budget airline easyJet flew lower despite saying it swung to a pre-tax profit in the third quarter amid strong passenger demand, and that it expects to post record profit for the fourth quarter.

Market Movers

FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,610.89 0.30%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 19,314.63 -0.04%
techMARK (TASX) 4,460.67 -0.01%

FTSE 100 – Risers

Anglo American (AAL) 2,378.50p 3.08%
Glencore (GLEN) 463.85p 2.13%
Airtel Africa (AAF) 109.80p 1.86%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,512.00p 1.68%
Persimmon (PSN) 1,206.00p 1.65%
WPP (WPP) 873.80p 1.42%
M&G (MNG) 202.20p 1.38%
Beazley (BEZ) 576.50p 1.14%
Burberry Group (BRBY) 2,219.00p 1.14%
Severn Trent (SVT) 2,567.00p 1.10%

FTSE 100 – Fallers

Scottish Mortgage Inv Trust (SMT) 699.60p -1.77%
Flutter Entertainment (CDI) (FLTR) 15,525.00p -1.27%
Diageo (DGE) 3,410.00p -1.15%
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 900.00p -1.12%
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,783.00p -1.00%
Reckitt Benckiser Group (RKT) 5,822.00p -0.82%
Croda International (CRDA) 5,774.00p -0.76%
Sage Group (SGE) 937.20p -0.74%
Entain (ENT) 1,273.00p -0.66%
Experian (EXPN) 3,014.00p -0.56%

FTSE 250 – Risers

Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK) 2,104.00p 7.81%
IG Group Holdings (IGG) 728.50p 5.20%
Babcock International Group (BAB) 330.40p 4.69%
Dunelm Group (DNLM) 1,150.00p 3.50%
Lancashire Holdings Limited (LRE) 616.50p 2.41%
Harbour Energy (HBR) 260.00p 2.36%
Energean (ENOG) 1,126.00p 2.09%
Vesuvius (VSVS) 429.80p 1.80%
Volution Group (FAN) 392.00p 1.73%
Balanced Commercial Property Trust Limited (BCPT) 74.20p 1.64%

FTSE 250 – Fallers

Helios Towers (HTWS) 90.95p -5.31%
Pennon Group (PNN) 715.00p -4.03%
Ninety One (N91) 170.70p -3.88%
Bytes Technology Group (BYIT) 519.00p -3.44%
Telecom Plus (TEP) 1,704.00p -3.40%
Me Group International (MEGP) 153.80p -3.27%
Assura (AGR) 47.38p -2.87%
Ascential (ASCL) 224.60p -2.86%
Coats Group (COA) 68.00p -2.58%
Jupiter Fund Management (JUP) 104.20p -2.43%

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