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London midday: Stocks tick higher amid earnings deluge; Powell speech eyed

Published Nov 09, 2023 12:02 Updated Nov 09, 2023 12:11
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London midday: Stocks tick higher amid earnings deluge; Powell speech eyed
 
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Sharecast - The FTSE 100 was up 0.2% at 7,419.52.

TickMill Group said: "Federal Reserve Chair Powell is taking the stage for the second consecutive day, following his remarks yesterday where he remained silent on the immediate monetary policy outlook.

"The market is eagerly anticipating his response to the significant drop in bond yields since last week's Fed monetary policy update. Additionally, three other Fed officials are also scheduled to speak, adding to the potential insights into the central bank's perspective on the current economic landscape. Investors will be closely watching for any hints or guidance regarding the Fed's stance in light of recent developments."

Figures released earlier by the National Bureau of Statistics showed that China fell back into deflationary territory in October.

The consumer price index fell 0.2% versus the same month last year, and compared to expectations for a 0.1% decline. The data showed that pork prices tumbled 30.1%.

Meanwhile, the producer price index fell 2.6% on the year in October following a 2.5% drop in September.

Core inflation - which excludes volatile elements such as food and fuel - fell to 0.6% from 0.8%.

On home shores, the latest survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors showed the decline in house prices was steadying.

The net balance of surveyors reporting that house prices have risen over the last three months ticked up to -63 in October, from -69 in September, coming in above consensus expectations of -65.

Comments by Bank of England chief economist Huw Pill were also in focus, after he backed keeping interest rates at their current record levels, as the central bank continues to prioritise tackling inflation.

In a speech to the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, Pill said that now monetary policy was in "restrictive territory", the central banks did not need to raise rates "in order to bear down on inflation".

Instead he argued: "Sustaining rates at their current restrictive level will continue to bear down on inflation.

"It is that maintaining of the restrictive stance that is key to achieving the inflation target.

"We are becoming more confident that we can bring inflation to target, but we will keep interest rates at the current level for an extended period."

His comments echoed those made by governor Andrew Bailey, who on Wednesday said it was too early to talk about rate cuts.

In equity markets, there was more corporate news than you can shake a stick at.

Auto Trader shot to the top of the FTSE 100 as it posted a 10% jump in first-half operating profit and a 12% increase in revenue. It said the volume of buyers on Auto Trader was at "record" levels.

AstraZeneca (NASDAQ:AZN) advanced as it lifted its full-year guidance for core earnings per share and total revenue excluding Covid medicines.

Taylor Wimpey (LON:TW) rose as the housebuilder highlighted an uncertain market backdrop but said it now expects full-year operating profit to be at the top end of its guidance range thanks to a "focus on optimising price and sharp cost discipline".

National Grid (LON:NG) and Lancashire Holdings also racked up strong gains after results and a trading statement, respectively.

Consumer goods giant Unilever (LON:ULVR) was higher after Barclays (LON:BARC) upgraded the shares to ‘overweight’ from ‘equalweight’ and lifted the price target to 4,600p from 4,300p, turning more positive having digested chief executive Hein Schumacher’s strategy update and targets.

On the downside, Flutter Entertainment tumbled as it said full-year group adjusted EBITDA excluding the US was set to come in at the bottom end of the range of £1.44bn to £1.6bn.

Discount retailer B&M was under pressure even as it raised guidance for profits and store openings after a strong first half, with double-digit growth in both revenues and earnings.

HSBC and Sainsbury’s were weaker as they traded without entitlement to the dividend.

Wizz Air (LON:WIZZ) flew lower after the low-cost airline said full-year profits would be at the bottom end of guidance due to a "difficult" environment.

Domino’s, Indivior and Wood Group also lost ground after trading updates and results.

Market Movers

FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,419.52 0.24%

FTSE 250 (MCX) 17,922.72 0.43%

techMARK (TASX) 4,087.22 0.01%

FTSE 100 - Risers

Auto Trader Group (AUTO) 684.60p 7.74%

Rightmove (RMV) 485.90p 3.52%

AstraZeneca (AZN) 10,456.00p 2.81%

Smurfit Kappa Group (CDI) (LON:SKG) 2,830.00p 2.09%

Taylor Wimpey (TW.) 117.95p 2.08%

RS Group (LON:RS1R) (RS1) 706.00p 2.05%

Unilever (ULVR) 3,973.50p 1.78%

Antofagasta (LON:ANTO) 1,322.00p 1.69%

Smith & Nephew (SN.) 1,007.50p 1.69%

Pershing Square (NYSE:SQ) Holdings Ltd NPV (PSH) 3,012.00p 1.28%

FTSE 100 - Fallers

Flutter Entertainment (CDI) (FLTR) 12,485.00p -8.87%

B&M European Value Retail S.A. (DI) (BME) 517.60p -3.76%

Endeavour Mining (EDV (LON:EDV)) 1,633.00p -3.09%

Fresnillo (LON:FRES) 531.40p -1.92%

HSBC Holdings (LON:HSBA) 599.00p -1.37%

BP (LON:BP.) 470.65p -1.36%

Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) 264.40p -1.23%

Airtel Africa (AAF) 113.60p -1.22%

Anglo American (JO:AGLJ) (AAL) 2,078.50p -0.81%

Rolls-Royce Holdings (LON:RR.) 230.80p -0.69%

FTSE 250 - Risers

Lancashire Holdings Limited (LRE) 646.50p 6.60%

Morgan Advanced Materials (LON:MGAMM) (MGAM) 243.00p 4.29%

Spirent Communications (LON:SPT) 102.80p 4.05%

IWG (LON:IWG) 142.90p 3.93%

Just Group (LON:JUSTJ) (JUST) 81.30p 3.57%

Assura (AGR) 44.26p 3.12%

Bridgepoint Group (Reg S) (BPT) 195.50p 2.73%

Premier Foods (PFD) 127.60p 2.57%

TP Icap Group (TCAP) 175.70p 2.57%

Essentra (LON:ESNT) 149.40p 2.47%

FTSE 250 - Fallers

Domino's Pizza Group (LON:DOM) 344.00p -7.43%

Wizz Air Holdings (WIZZ) 1,761.50p -5.45%

Softcat (LON:SCTS) (SCT) 1,289.00p -2.64%

Darktrace (LON:DARK) 350.00p -2.21%

Indivior (INDV) 1,509.00p -1.95%

GCP Infrastructure Investments Ltd (GCP) 65.10p -1.66%

Hilton Food Group (HFG) 696.00p -1.42%

Balanced Commercial Property Trust Limited (BCPT) 65.10p -1.36%

HarbourVest Global Private Equity Limited A Shs (HVPE) 2,205.00p -1.34%

The Renewables Infrastructure Group Limited (TRIG) 104.40p -1.32%

Read more on Sharecast.com

London midday: Stocks tick higher amid earnings deluge; Powell speech eyed
 

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