– The FTSE 100 closed the day at 6,766.52, a decrease of 22.17 points.
– The FTSE 250 fell by 29.11 points to finish at 17,752.31.
– The FTSE All Share slipped 10.77 points to 3,686.70.
– The FTSE AIM All Share finished 0.39 points higher at 757.62.
UK Government borrowing dropped once again in June as income tax receipts rose to a record £11.5 billion, according to the Office for National Statistics. Net new debt totalled £9.4 billion, down by £0.8 billion from a year earlier, but analysts had expected it to be even lower. Howard Archer, Chief UK Economist at IHS Global Insight, estimated that “if the pattern of the first three months of the fiscal year continued, public borrowing would amount to £70.9bn in 2015-16”.
Royal Mail (RMG) said that revenues for the three months ended 28th June were flat relative to the same period of 2014 with a 2% increase in parcel income offsetting a 4% drop in letter revenues. Given that last year’s comparative period was fairly weak, this is not a reassuring update and the ongoing OFCOM investigation into the letter delivery market is also bound to cause headaches. The shares dropped by 1p to 510p.
Shares in IG Group (IGG) dropped by 6.82% to 752p after the company announced that the rapid rise in the value of the Swiss Franc had significantly dented profits for the year ended 31st May. Pre-tax earnings were £169.5 million, 13% below those from the prior year. Shore Capital reiterated its “sell” rating and 670p target price, commenting that “the numbers are slightly below our expectations in a period where we thought that IG may have some capacity to take advantage of difficulties at a competitor towards the period end”.
Software outfit Learning Technologies Group (LTG) said that profits for the six months ended 30th June were in line with management expectations as last year’s acquisitions were integrated into the working group. Margins were better than forecast and the firm won a number of major contracts, meaning it may hit its £50 million revenue target by 2017. Numis reiterated a “buy” stance and said that “LTG has very robust operating momentum”. Shares in the company climbed 1% to 23p.
Media firm Mobile Streams (MOS) saw its shares rise sharply this morning before settling back down and closing the day at 5.25p, a 2.44% rise. Business in core Argentinean markets has been challenging recently due to currency devaluation, with revenues for the year to 30th June set to drop by 40.3% to £29 million.
Tomorrow’s news today
ARM Holdings (ARM) and Staffline Group (STAF) are among the firms that will publish interim results tomorrow.
Quote of the day
“The investor of today does not profit from yesterday’s growth.”
– Warren Buffett