The Cambridge Index declined 234.8 points or 0.9% to close at 26995.4, as seven of the top ten Index heavyweights posted weekly losses to their share prices.
Cambridge Index eases 0.9%
DS Smith, down 3.1%, in its interim results for the six months ended 31 October 2019, announced that revenues rose to £3.2b from £3.1b posted in the same period last year. Its profit before tax increased to £213m from £162m reported in the previous year, while its basic earnings per share advanced to 12p from 9.5p in the previous year. The company’s board declared an interim dividend of 5.4p per share, payable on 1 May 2020 to shareholders on the register as at 14 April 2020. Berenberg reiterated its “Buy” rating, UBS reconfirmed its “Neutral” rating and Peel Hunt reissued its “Buy” rating on the stock.
SDI Group, up 4.5%, announced that it has acquired Chell Instruments, a manufacturer of pressure, vacuum and gas flow measurement instruments, for a consideration of £4.3m and an additional cash payment for net assets at completion. The Board also announced that it has taken a 3-year amortising term loan of £4.8m, in agreement with HSBC Bank Plc, to add to the Senior Facility of £5m (not fully drawn), with the end date of both facilities being April 2023.
Brady, unchanged at 17.7p, informed the London Stock Exchange its intention for terminating trading of its ordinary shares on AIM, after Hanover Acquisition Limited acquired more than 75% of its shares at 1p each in accordance with Hanover's proposed mandatory final offer. Following the cancellation, Hanover will seek to re-register Brady as a private limited company.
Amino Technologies, down 1.9%, announced an agreement with Dutch MVNO Youfone for the provision of next-generation TV service.
UK markets closed in the red last week, weighed down by losses in mining and energy sector stocks. The UK’s construction PMI rose in November, whereas the Halifax house price index advanced in the three months ended November. Britain’s services PMI contracted in November, and the manufacturing PMI fell for the seventh consecutive month in the same month. The FTSE 100 index declined 1.5% to settle at 7239.7, while the FTSE AIM 100 index fell 2.1% to close at 4647.7. Meanwhile, the FTSE techMARK 100 index lost 1% to end at 5698.4.
US markets ended lower in the previous week, after the US President, Donald Trump, signalled a possible delay in the trade deal with China until after the 2020 presidential election. The US non-farm payrolls advanced by the most in 10 months in November, whereas the manufacturing PMI climbed to its highest level in 6 months in November. Additionally, the US unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in 50 years in November, while the trade deficit narrowed to a 16-month low level in October. The DJIA index fell 0.1% to end at 28015.1, while the NASDAQ index lost 0.1% to close at 8656.5.
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