News Column

BHP helps boost FTSE as Ukraine worries ease, but Tesco falls to near 10 year low

July 23, 2014

Nick Fletcher,

Positive company updates and a more positive mood about the current crises in Ukraine and Gaza have helped support the market in early trading.

But Tesco has slumped to a near 10 year low, down 2.35p at 275p on continuing concerns about a possible price war with J Sainsbury, 1.3p lower at 312.5p, and Morrisons, up 0.2p at 171.7p, following the proposed departure of chief executive Philip Clarke.

Among the gainers BHP Billiton is 13.5p better at 20.68 after the mining group beat full year guidance for iron ore production by 4%. The company's chief executive Andrew Mackenzie said:

We expect to maintain strong momentum and remain on track to generate group production growth of 16% over the two years to the end of the 2015 financial year.

The news has lifted rival Rio Tinto by 8p to 33.45 and Anglo American by 4p to 1604.5p.

Elsewhere outsourcing group Capita has climbed 43p to 11.98 after it reported a 16% rise in underlying half year profit to 238m.

But SSE is leading the fallers, down 49p at 14.92 after the energy group's shares went ex-dividend. London Stock Exchange slipped 11p to 19.35 for the same reason.

Standard Chartered has dipped 7p to 12.09 following a Financial Times report it had reined in expansion plans so it could conserve capital amid falling profits.

Overall the FTSE 100 has edged up 8.20 points to 6803.54, unmoved by Bank of England minutes which showed a 9-0 vote for keeping rates and quantitative easing unchanged.

Among the mid-caps Renishaw has soared 15% to 16.93 as the engineering group said a strong fourth quarter had helped it lift full year profits by 17%. The company won large orders from an Asian customer and also sold its stake in software group Delcam.

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Source: Guardian Web

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