Cambridge Index jumps 6.3%

13/03/2018

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The Cambridge Index advanced 6.3% or 1,515 points to settle at 25,557, as the top three Index heavyweights posted weekly gains to their share prices.

DS Smith, up 11%, announced that trading for the period was in line with its expectations, with robust box volume growth since the first half of the year. Numis Securities restated its “Hold” rating on the stock with a target price of 530p. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed its “Overweight” rating on the stock with a target price of 600p.

Ubisense Group, up 7%, announced that it has signed an agreement to re-organise its business in Japan. The company indicated that it will spin off its Japanese services business into a separate entity, which it has agreed to sell to a subsidiary of Japan’s FinTech Global Inc. for a gross consideration of around £700,000 on 30 March 2018; it will gain a 23% minority interest in the Japanese company.

Elektron Technology, up 5.5%, announced that Food Standards Agency (FSA) has successfully carried out a three-month trial in five businesses using its Checkit digital platform. The FSA further stated that this technology can be used in food businesses to ensure quality and hygiene practices.

Peel Hunt reissued its “Buy” rating on Kier Group, up 5.3%, with a target price of 1600p.

Numis Securities restated its “Buy” rating on Horizon Discovery Group, unchanged at 175p, with a target price of 300p.

Peel Hunt reaffirmed its “Add” rating on Xaar, down 4.5%, with a target price of 420p.

Netcall, down 11.6%, announced in its interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2017 that revenues increased to £10.7m. However, its profit before tax declined to £278,000. FinnCap lifted its target price on the stock to 75p from 70p.

UK markets ended higher in the last week, supported by gains in financial and housebuilding stocks. British services activity jumped more-than-expected in February. UK house prices grew at their slowest pace in five years, while its industrial production rose less-than-expected in January. The FTSE 100 index climbed 2.2% to settle at 7,224.5, while the FTSE AIM 100 index advanced 2.8% to close at 5,439.6. The FTSE techMARK 100 index rose 3.6% to end at 4,541.

US markets finished the previous week on a positive footing, following the US President’s announcement of imposing tariffs on some steel and aluminium imports. The US economy added the highest number of jobs in nearly two years in February, while ADP employment change advanced more-than-expected in the same month. US factory orders recorded their biggest fall in six months for January, while the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose from a 48-year low level last week. The DJIA index advanced 3.3% to end at 25,335.7, while the NASDAQ index gained 4.2% to close at 7,560.8.

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