Cambridge Index slides 0.7%

220719_The Cambridge & FTSE AIM 100 Index Movement

The Cambridge Index declined 182.1 points or 0.7% to close at 25828.3, as Index heavyweights such as Johnson Matthey and DS Smith posted weekly losses to their share prices.

 Johnson Matthey, down 5%, announced in its trading update that its annual performance expectations remain unchanged, with performance weighted heavily towards the second half. However, its largest business unit, Clean Air, is anticipated to report operating profit slightly less than the previous year, due to higher short-term costs. Separately, the company announced the retirement of John Walker as the Executive Director and Sector Chief Executive of Clean Air.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) revealed that DS Smith’s proposed disposal of its rigid and flexible packaging business to Liqui-Box could create insufficient competition, increasing the possibility of poor-quality products and services and higher prices.

Abcam, up 4.1%, announced that it has acquired the entire live cell line and lysates portfolio of genome editing technologies firm, EdiGene Inc. Peel Hunt reiterated its “Add” rating on the stock.

Amino Technologies, up 5%, announced the acquisition of an 87% stake in online video specialist, 24i Media (24i), for a total consideration of €21.4m.

Cambridge Cognition Holdings, up 3.3%, announced a second commercial partnership with a leading pharmaceutical company for its unique voice biomarker technology platform, NeuroVocalix.

Scientific Digital Imaging, up 2.2%, in its final results for the year ended 30 April 2019, announced that revenues surged to £17.4m from £14.5m reported in the last year. Its profit before tax rose to £2.1m from £1.7m reported in the previous year, while basic earnings per share advanced to 2.1p from 1.81p.

Tristel, unchanged at 300p, announced that it expects annual performance to be in line with its previous forecast, with revenues rising by 17% to £26m.

Science Group, unchanged at 199p, announced its decision to waive the acceptance condition according to the offer document declaring the offer unconditional as to acceptances. The company continued to purchase shares of Frontier Smart Technologies Group Limited, with its current holding rising to 39.9% at 16.2m Frontier shares.

Gaming Realms, down 6.8%, announced that it has successfully completed the disposal of its gaming subsidiary, Bear Group Limited, as well its stake in River UK Casino Limited to River iGaming for an initial cash consideration of £7.35m and total value of £11.5m due to be cleared till 31 December 2020 in deferred consideration of £1.5m.

Peel Hunt reconfirmed its “Hold” rating on Horizon Discovery Group, down 8.4%. CyanConnode Holdings, down 20%, in its trading update for the six months ended 30 June 2019, announced that it expects total revenue to decline 38% to £1m and operating losses to narrow by 16% to £3m. The Board expects to achieve full year market expectations for 2019.

UK markets closed mostly higher last week, led by gains in mining and consumer discretionary sector stocks. The UK’s inflation grew as estimated in June, while the nation’s public sector net borrowings for June hit its highest level since 2015. Moreover, Britain’s retail sales unexpectedly rose in June. The FTSE 100 index marginally rose to settle at 7508.7, while the FTSE AIM 100 index fell 0.7% to close at 4695. Meanwhile, the FTSE techMARK 100 index gained 0.2% to end at 5191.2.

US markets ended lower last week, amid losses in technology and industrial sector stocks. US building permits fell to a 2-year low in June, whereas the advance retail sales climbed more than anticipated in June. The US Fed’s latest Beige Book report revealed that the US economy grew at a modest pace in recent weeks, led by consumer spending and an overall generally positive outlook despite disruptions caused by the US trade policy. The DJIA index fell 0.7% to end at 27154.2, while the NASDAQ index lost 1.2% to close at 8146.5.

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