– The FTSE 100 rose 21.88 points to 6,630.47.
– The FTSE 250 slipped 31.03 points to 17,686.02.
– The FTSE All Share rose 8.75 points to 3,624.49.
– The FTSE AIM All Share finished 0.47 points lower at 761.45.
Nationwide said that the rate of annual house price growth hit a two-year low in June, falling to 3.3% from 4.6% a month earlier. A year ago, the rate was 11.8%. The national trend conceals vast regional differences – prices in Scotland and Wales actually declined over the last 12 months. “House price growth continues to outpace earnings, but the gap is closing, helped by a pick-up in annual wage growth, which moved up to 2.7% in the three months to April from 1.9% at the start of the year”, commented Nationwide Chief Economist Robert Gardner.
US employment rose by 223,000 in June, but estimates of jobs growth for April and May were revised downwards. Despite this, unemployment declined to 5.3%, which is the lowest level seen in the country since early 2008. Mohammed El-Erian, Allianz’s Chief Economic Advisor, said that “while this solid but far from great jobs report will raise questions about a September interest rate hike, the Federal Reserve is still likely to hike then absent a big external shock”.
Dixons Carphone (DC.) shares rose by 5.9p to 464.7p after the retailer agreed a new deal with US outfit Sprint to operate a number of stores across the US. The outlets will be branded as Sprint, and Dixons Carphone will initially supply expertise in mobile telecoms sales. If this stage is successful, a joint venture will be established to run up to 500 branches.
Johnson Services (JSG) expects to clean up this financial year after a strong start during the six months ended 30th June. Results for 2015 are now forecast to slightly exceed previously issued guidance. The integration of London Linen is underway following the completion of its takeover in April. Investec reiterated a “buy” rating on the stock. Shares in Johnson Services rose by 1.5p to 87.75p.
Staffline (STAF) said that trading during the six months ended 30th June was strong, with its core staffing business seeing a record start to its financial year. Demand from both established and new customers has been good, and the integration of A4e is said to be proceeding as planned. Finncap reiterated a “buy” rating and 1,546p target price. The shares grew by 76p to 1,396p.
Drinks manufacturer C&C Group (CCR) said that tighter Scottish regulations were to blame for a slow start to its current financial year, but added that performance had gradually improved as the first quarter went on. Unseasonably cold and wet weather in Scotland and Ireland during May also put a dent in demand, but England and Wales saw better sales. C&C shares rose by 100p to 1,420p.
Tomorrow’s news today
Tomorrow will see a raft of PMI data from Europe and the UK. There will also be a trading update from MJ Gleeson (GLE).
Quote of the day
“Failure is success if we learn from it.”
– Malcolm Forbes