– The FTSE 100 closed the day at 6,194.10, an increase of 110.79 points.
– The FTSE 250 grew by 201.51 points to finish at 17,087.24.
– The FTSE All Share climbed by 56.18 points to 3,410.84.
– The FTSE AIM All Share finished at 734.74, down by 4.28 points.
The latest services PMI survey shows that confidence in the sector has fallen to its lowest level in 27 years. Markit’s Chief Economist Chris Williamson noted that the reading was “well below even the most pessimistic of economists’ forecasts and [it] follows disappointing news of a stagnation in the manufacturing sector earlier in the week,” and the news could take off some of the pressure on the Bank of England to normalise interest rates.
Wholesaler Booker (BOK) saw sales for the 10 weeks ended 28th August fall by 2% year-on-year, largely due to a 6.5% drop in tobacco sales that the company has blamed on changes in the regulatory environment. Sales of other merchandise rose by 0.1%, but the Competition and Markets Authority has given the green light for the takeovers of Londis and Budgens which provide a pathway into new markets and to potential future growth. Booker shares dropped by 2.80p to 176.20p.
Consumer transport firm Go-Ahead (GOG) posted a 13.7% drop in pre-tax profits to £78.7 million for the year ended 27th June, due to historically low margins in its rail business and increased exceptional costs, amortisation and impairments. Revenues performed better and grew by 19% to £3.22 billion, aided by record numbers of rail passengers. The company has bid and been shortlisted for a number of UK franchises and is also considering certain overseas opportunities for future growth. The shares fell by 135p to 2,401p.
Professional services provider Fairpoint (FRP) increased revenues for the six months ended 30th June by 64% to £22.9 million on the back of the expansion of its legal division and the acquisitions carried out over the last year. Profits before taxation also jumped by 21% to £1.3 million and management believe that growth will continue through the rest of the year as the company continues to expand via takeovers. The shares rose by 4p to 175p.
Developer Premier Oil (PMO) has announced that it will plug and abandon an exploration well off the coast of Norway. The company had found a reservoir of around 110 net metres but the sands contained water rather than oil. Shares in the firm gained 2.67% and closed at 101.60p.
Tomorrow’s news today
EMIS (EMIS) will post interims tomorrow morning.
Quote of the day
“All I ask is the chance to prove that money can’t make me happy.”
– Spike Milligan