The Cambridge Index advanced 839.5 points or 3.4% to close at 25604.5, as the top five Index heavyweights posted weekly gains to their share prices.
Cambridge Index rises 3.4%
DS Smith, up 2.6%, announced in its trading update for the period since 1 May 2019 that it expects full year trading performance to remain in line with previous guidance, despite ongoing macro-economic uncertainty. UBS reiterated its “Neutral” rating and Peel Hunt restated its “Buy” rating on the stock.
Greene King, up 0.1%, in its trading update four months ended 1 September 2019, announced that the like-for-like (LFL) sales of its Pub Company division reported a growth of 1.5% in the recent seven weeks, while its LFL sales for the 18 weeks fell 1.8%. LFL net income of Pub Partners declined 4.2% for the first 16 weeks. In Brewing & Brands, total beer volumes slid 6.5% for the first 18 weeks and own-brewed volumes fell 7.9%. The company expects to sell 85-95 of its pubs in 2019 to raise around £45-55m.
Abcam, up 7.2%, announced that its annual revenue advanced 11.4% to £259.9m, while its profit before tax fell 18.4% to £56.4m.
Gaming Realms, up 15.3%, announced a licensing deal with Stockholm-listed online gaming operator, Betsson Group, to launch its Slingo games across Betsson’s global network of brands, which include Betsafe, NordicBet, CasinoEuro and Europebet.
Elektron Technology, up 4.7%, announced that the sale of its Bulgin business to funds managed by Equistone Partners Europe has been approved by the Austrian competition authorities. Separately, Elektron plans to launch a share buyback program of approximately £81m.
Frontier Developments, up 2.5%, in its final results for the year ended 31 May 2019, that revenues skyrocketed to £89.7m from £34.2m posted in the preceding year. Its profit before tax widened to £19.4m from £2.8m reported in the previous year, whereas basic earnings per share jumped to 45.4p from 9.6p. The stock received mostly “Buy” ratings from various brokers.
IQGeo Group, unchanged at 43p, announced that the tender offer revealed on 2 August 2019 received valid acceptances for 23.8m shares, representing nearly 84.2% of the total tender offer. FinnCap will acquire around 23.8m ordinary shares at 46p per share for a total consideration of £11m.
LPA Group, down 1.1%, announced that it has secured contracts worth £4m for new products including complex under-frame electro-mechanical boxes for railway rolling stock and an export contract for the delivery of LED-based lighting on trams.
Xaar, down 30.9%, in its half-yearly trading update, announced that it anticipates revenue for the period to be around £22.5m, including a revenue reversal of £4.3m relating to the return of its Xaar 1201 Thin Film printhead inventory. Xaar expects its performance for the full year to be weaker than previously predicted, amid lower sales volume of Xaar 1201 and Xaar 2001 printheads.
UK markets closed higher in the previous week, led by gains in mining and banking sector stocks. The UK’s manufacturing PMI eased to a 7-year low in August, whereas services sector activity fell more than expected in the same month. Further, UK’s construction PMI unexpectedly eased in August. The BoE Governor Mark Carney stated that the impact of a no-deal Brexit on the British economy would be less severe than predicted earlier. The FTSE 100 index advanced 1% to settle at 7282.34, while the FTSE AIM 100 index rose 1.9% to close at 4495.58. Meanwhile, the FTSE techMARK 100 index gained 2.1% to end at 5370.6.
US markets ended in the green last week, supported by gains in consumer discretionary and technology sector stocks. The US non-farm payrolls climbed less than expected in August, whereas the manufacturing sector activity contracted for the first time in three years in September. On the contrary, the US private sector employment advanced more than anticipated in August, while the services sector activity jumped in August. The DJIA index rose 1.5% to end at 26797.46, while the NASDAQ index gained 1.8% to close at 8103.07.
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