– The FTSE 100 closed the day at 6,696.28, an increase of 27.41 points.
– The FTSE 250 rose by 156.40 points and finished at 17,677.40.
– The FTSE All Share grew by 17.51 points to 3,652.79.
– The FTSE AIM All Share finished at 751.16, a rise of 0.99 points.
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) reported a 2% increase in income to £8.97 billion during the first half of the year. Despite this, profits failed to meet analyst expectations as the firm set aside a fresh £1.4 billion against new mis-selling charges, taking the total provisions made for PPI claims to £13.4 billion. Hargreaves Lansdown remained fairly positive and said that the interim dividend of 0.75p opened the door for a progressive payout policy in the future. Lloyds shares fell by 2.82p to 83.2p.
Miner Antofagasta (ANTO) announced that it has bought a 50% in the Zaldivar copper mine from Barrick Gold for a $1.01 billion (£0.65 billion) consideration. The firm said that the deal would be immediately earnings enhancing. Goldman Sachs said that the company had effectively traded its recently disposed water business for a copper play, but did not believe that it substantially changed the investment case. Shares in Antofagasta dropped by 13.5p to 567p.
High street retailer JD Sports Fashion (JD.) said that it expects full year pre-tax profits to be around 10% higher than current market forecasts and believes it will hit roughly £120 million. Like-for-like sales have grown strongly, overwhelming the effect of the weak Euro. Investec stuck with a “buy” rating and raised its target price from 730p to 900p. JD Sports shares shot up 7.84% to 805p.
Textile services specialist Berendsen (BRSN) recorded revenues of £493.7 million over the half year ended 30th June, a 5% decline from last year’s level caused by adverse currency movements. Profits before tax dropped by 4% to £48.5 million, but management decided to increase the interim dividend by 5% to 10p. Berendsen shares rose by 23p to 1,023p.
IT services provider Colt SA (COLT) posted a 2.6% increase in revenues for the six months ended 30th June. However, the company fell from a €13.6 million (£9.16 million) pre-tax profit for the period in 2014 to a €13 million (£9.58 million) loss this year due to shifts in product mix boosting margins. Shares in the company grew 0.5p and closed at 187.5p.
Monday’s news today
Fidessa (FDSA), Intertek (ITRK), Keller Group (KLR), Telit Communications (TCM), Trinity Mirror (TNI), and Ultra Electronics (ULE) are among the firms that will publish interim results on Monday.
Quote of the day
“Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government programme.”
– Milton Friedman