The Cambridge Index advanced 298.3 points or 1.1% to close at 27,950.5, as three of the top five Index heavyweights posted weekly gains to their share prices.
Cambridge Index climbs 1.1%
Bernstein restated its “Outperform” rating on Johnson Matthey, down 3.3%, with a target price of 4100p.
Bank of America trimmed its target price on DS Smith, down 4.6%, to 400p from 450p and gave a “Neutral” rating. UBS Group raised its target price on the stock to 365p from 358p and issued a “Neutral” rating.
Abcam, up 6%, announced that it has appointed Michael Baldock as the Chief Financial Officer with effect from 03 February 2020.
Frontier Developments, up 6.3%, in its trading update for the six months ended 30 November 2019, announced that its total revenue significantly dropped to £32m from £64.7m in the same period last year. Further, the company stated that it anticipates annual sales to be between its previously set targets of £65m to £73m. The company’s interim financial results for the six months ended 30 November 2019 are expected to be released on 05 February 2020. Liberum Capital reiterated its “Buy” rating on the stock.
Horizon Discovery Group, up 0.4%, announced that it has entered into an Option Agreement and a Research Agreement with Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (US), enabling it to obtain a licence for the provision of a novel base editing technology for special use in therapeutic, diagnostic and services applications.
Tristel, down 0.9%, announced that it expects to publish its interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2019 on 24 February 2020.
Kier Group, down 5%, in its trading update for the period ended 31 December 2019, announced that performance was in line with its expectations. Separately, the firm announced that it is planning to cut 1,200 jobs by June 2020, in an attempt to turnaround the business. Liberum Capital affirmed its “Buy” rating on the stock. Peel Hunt reiterated its “Buy” rating on the stock.
Xaar, down 9.7%, in its trading update for the year ended 31 December 2019, announced that it expects revenues to be around £46m, following upbeat performance in the second half of 2019. Its cash balances (including cash held for investment in Xaar 3D) as at 31 December 2019 were £25.4m.
Peel Hunt reaffirmed its “Buy” rating on Gaming Realms, down 10%.
UK markets finished higher in the previous week, supported by gains in housebuilding and retail sector stocks. The UK economy grew at its slowest pace since June 2012 in November, whereas the British retail sales unexpectedly fell in December. The UK industrial production and manufacturing production, both, dropped more than expected in November. The FTSE 100 index advanced 1.1% to settle at 7674.56, while the FTSE AIM 100 index gained 1.7% to close at 5000.73. Meanwhile, the FTSE techMARK 100 index climbed 2% to end at 6075.94.
US markets ended in positive territory in the last week, after the US Senate approved the US-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) Free Trade Agreement. In economic news, the US Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index jumped to its highest level in 8 months in January, while the nation’s housing starts accelerated at its fastest pace in 13 years in December. US inflation rose less-than-expected in December, while the nation’s Michigan consumer sentiment index dropped in January. The DJIA index advanced 1.8% to end at 29348.1, while the NASDAQ index jumped 2.3% to close at 9388.94.
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