Date: Monday 25 Jul 2011
Shares are set to start the week on the back foot, with the Footsie tipped to duck back below 5,900, as investors wait on the Republicans and President Obama to agree on a package of measures that will ensure that the USA's debt ceiling is raised.
On the company news front, announcements are coming thick and fast in what is set to be a frenetic week.
Strong growth in developing markets helped household and healthcare products group Reckitt Benckiser offset weakness in Europe to post pre-tax profits of £1.04bn, up from £971m over the same period the previous year, on revenues that soared to £4.62bn from £4.06bn.
Assets under management (AuM) at asset manager Aberdeen Asset Management edged up 2.5% in the second quarter of 2011, to £185.8bn, from £181.2bn at the end of March. Net new business inflows in the corresponding quarter of 2010 totalled £0.3bn.
Power and gas grid operator National Grid's operational and financial performance since the beginning of April was described as 'solid' by chief executive, Steve Holiday. "We reconfirm our positive outlook for 2011/12 - we expect to deliver another year of good operating performance, although, as previously highlighted, comparative financial results will show some impact from the timing differences that benefited 2010/11," Holiday said.
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