(Sharecast News) – London stocks were set to rise at the open on Friday after the release of encouraging Chinese data.
The FTSE 100 was called to open around 40 points higher.
Figures released earlier by the Bureau of National Statistics showed that retail sales an industrial production grew more than expected in August.
Retail sales were up 4.6% on the year, beating expectations for growth of 3% and coming in ahead of July’s 2.5% increase.
Meanwhile, industrial production rose 4.5% in August on the year following 3.7% growth in July, coming in ahead of expectations of 3.9% growth.
However, fixed asset investment was 3.2% higher on the year last month, down from 3.4% in July and below expectations for a 3.3% increase. The data showed a big drop in real estate investment.
ING said: “While the overall economic background remains a very challenged one, there were some more positive signs in the latest data deluge, though all things related to the property market continue to struggle.”
There wasn’t much happening on the UK corporate front, but Games Workshop said trading for the quarter to August 27 was ahead of expectations driven by healthy growth across all channels.
In a brief trading update ahead of its annual shareholders meeting next week, the maker of Warhammer said core revenue had risen to £121m for the quarter, ahead of the £106m posted last year with licensing revenue doubling to £6m. Pre-tax profit was estimated at around £57m, up from £39m.
“The board recognises that this performance is better than the prior year but is also aware that it is still early in the financial year. A further update will be given as appropriate,” the company added.
It also declared a dividend of 50p per share taking dividends declared so far in 2023/24 to £1.95 per share, up from £1.20 per share a year earlier.