Cambridge Index gains 2.4%

Successful debt auctions by some European nations, coupled with encouraging economic data and company earnings, helped global equity markets to rally. The Cambridge Index rose 2.4% or 246.2 points to 10,482.4, with eight of the top ten index heavyweights recording gains.

Greene King, up 6.4%, announced that like-for-like (LFL) sales rose 8.2% in the seven weeks to 15 January. Although it expects another difficult year for the UK consumer in 2012, it remains confident that it would continue to deliver growth and value to its shareholders. DS Smith jumped 16.9% after it announced the acquisition of Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget, excluding two Swedish mills manufacturing kraftliner paper, for a consideration of €1.7 billion. Blinkx, up 0.7%, announced that that it has partnered with International Business Times.

230112_Cambridge Index and FTSE AIM 100 movement

Phytopharm surged 19.8%, emerging as the top gainer in the Cambridge Index, after the company announced positive preliminary data of its Cogane(TM) drug. Brady rallied 8.3% after announcing contract wins. Separately, the company, in its trading update, announced that it expects to report revenue growth of approximately 70% in 2011, ahead of market forecasts.

Other prominent gainers were CSR and Domino Printing Sciences, which rose 11.5% and 8.0% respectively. Xaar, up 1.0%, announced that trading for the fourth quarter of the year was slightly ahead of the board’s expectations, leading to a strong performance for the full year 2011.

Sepura, up 0.5%, announced the resignation of Non-Executive Director Tim Bunting with immediate effect. Vernalis, up 1.9%, announced that it has entered into a new three-year joint oncology collaboration with Servier, focussing on the discovery of drugs for a new undisclosed target. LPA Group gained 5.7% after the company swung to a full year profit of £0.4 million, compared to a loss of £0.5 million recorded in the previous year.

Artisan (UK) dropped 14.3% to 6p and emerged as the top loser in the Cambridge Index. Sagentia Group fell 2.3%, despite announcing that it anticipates profit for the year ended 31 December 2011 to be in line with its previous guidance. Abcam, down 2.0%, announced that its business is performing well and is on track to meet its full year profit expectations.

Other noticeable losers were Kier Group and Bango, which declined 2.6% and 1.3% respectively. Netcall remained flat at 19.5p. The company, in its trading update, announced that it continues to trade in line with management’s expectations, securing a good level of orders from both new and existing customers. Cyan Holdings remained unchanged at 0.4p. The company announced that it expects a significant number of new orders in 2012, as it continues to accumulate new customers.

In the UK, the FTSE 100 index closed 1.6% higher at 5,728.6, after the IMF announced that it would boost its financing capability in an attempt to support countries adversely affected by the Eurozone crisis and following successful debt auctions by France, German, Spain and Portugal. The FTSE techMARK 100 Index gained 2.7% to 2,171.4, while the FTSE AIM 100 Index added 2.4% to 3,469.0.

US markets closed higher, amid signs that the US economy is recovering, following better than expected company earnings announcements and economic data. Stocks also rose on speculation that Greece might reach an agreement with its private creditors shortly. The Dow Jones Index rose 2.4% to 12,720.5, while the Nasdaq Index rose 2.8% to 2,786.7.


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