Michele Maatouk WebFG News | 17 Jul, 2017 12:25 - Updated: 12:25 | | |
London stocks had extended gains by midday on Monday, lifted by encouraging Chinese data and a weaker pound.
The FTSE 100 was up 0.6% to 7,420.40, while the pound was down 0.3% versus the euro at 1.1400 and 0.2% weaker against the dollar at 1.3064 as Brexit secretary David Davis began a second round of negotiations in Brussels against a backdrop of political infighting among British ministers over the terms of the EU exit.
IG analyst Joshua Mahony said: "There is now a clear need to get a transitional deal into place, with the negotiations looking ever more unlikely to conclude satisfactorily within the two-year deadline."
Heavily-weighted mining stocks got a boost after data revealed China's second-quarter gross domestic product grew 6.9% from a year earlier, unchanged from the first quarter and ahead of expectations for 6.8%growth. On a quarterly basis, the economy grew 1.7% compared to 1.3% in the first quarter, as expected. Chinese retail sales, industrial production and fixed asset investment data for June were also encouraging.
In corporate news, ITV was the standout gainer after it poached Carolyn McCall from easyJet to be its new chief executive.
Carillion rocketed as it won HS2 contracts worth £1.4bn as part of its CEK joint venture with Kier and Eiffage. Meanwhile, Balfour Beatty gained as it won two contracts worth £2.5bn with JV partner Vinci and Mitie was boosted by a double upgrade to 'buy' at Investec.
Centrica edged higher as it and Stadtwerke München agreed to combine Centrica's European oil and gas exploration and production business with Bayerngas Norge to form a new joint venture.
Weir Group surged as it said its updated outlook for the group's full-year performance is now for strong constant currency revenue and profit growth, with revenues and operating profits in the oil & gas division set to be above the upper end of analysts' estimates as upstream North American markets have recovered more strongly than anticipated in recent weeks.
AstraZeneca rebounded after last week's rumour that chief executive Pascal Soriot was leaving flip-flopped into new rumours that he was now in the remain camp.
Barclays nudged lower as it emerged that the trial of the bank and four former executives charged with fraud over undisclosed payments to Qatari investors has been set for January 2019.
Elsewhere, the latest survey from Rightmove released overnight revealed that the prices of homes put up for sale in the UK remained just about flat last month.
Newly-marketed property prices edged up 0.1% in June, which was stronger than the previous month’s fall of 0.4%, and is a solid performance as the start of the summer holiday season generally has a dampening effect on both prices and activity, Rightmove said.
As the fundamentals of the housing market remain good, the online property experts said, this had led to the number of sales agreed numbers remaining almost identical to those in 2016, with many parts of the country seeing as high a proportion of properties marked as sold than at any time in the last seven years.
FTSE 100 - Risers
ITV (ITV) 180.20p 2.97%
Ashtead Group (AHT) 1,618.00p 2.34%
Glencore (GLEN) 322.80p 2.12%
Anglo American (AAL) 1,140.50p 2.10%
AstraZeneca (AZN) 5,101.00p 2.05%
Fresnillo (FRES) 1,509.00p 1.89%
Kingfisher (KGF) 299.00p 1.77%
Smurfit Kappa Group (SKG) 2,361.00p 1.68%
Micro Focus International (MCRO) 2,122.00p 1.58%
Mondi (MNDI) 2,044.00p 1.54%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Shire Plc (SHP) 4,123.50p -1.10%
Pearson (PSON) 630.00p -0.87%
Babcock International Group (BAB) 848.00p -0.53%
Royal Mail (RMG) 399.10p -0.47%
Imperial Brands (IMB) 3,483.50p -0.46%
Experian (EXPN) 1,581.00p -0.44%
Hammerson (HMSO) 582.00p -0.43%
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 66.70p -0.36%
Paddy Power Betfair (PPB) 7,725.00p -0.32%
Land Securities Group (LAND) 1,015.00p -0.29%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Carillion (CLLN) 69.15p 23.15%
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,950.00p 6.91%
Electra Private Equity (ELTA) 1,692.00p 4.44%
Mitie Group (MTO) 283.00p 3.40%
Balfour Beatty (BBY) 270.60p 2.93%
Rotork (ROR) 248.50p 2.77%
Vesuvius (VSVS) 593.00p 2.60%
Centamin (DI) (CEY) 163.20p 2.58%
Kaz Minerals (KAZ) 599.00p 2.48%
Petra Diamonds Ltd.(DI) (PDL) 100.90p 2.44%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
TalkTalk Telecom Group (TALK) 184.10p -2.18%
CYBG (CYBG) 273.60p -1.83%
Essentra (ESNT) 543.50p -1.54%
Barr (A.G.) (BAG) 595.50p -1.49%
Savills (SVS) 874.50p -1.46%
Metro Bank (MTRO) 3,535.00p -1.37%
Rank Group (RNK) 221.00p -1.34%
Workspace Group (WKP) 874.00p -1.19%
Wizz Air Holdings (WIZZ) 2,543.00p -1.13%
Coats Group (COA) 75.25p -0.99%
The scandal-hit parent company of high street discount chain Poundland will this week face key creditors and insurers at a meeting that could determine the future of its British retail operations. Poundland is already under intense pressure after Atradius - one of the credit insurers on which suppliers rely to ensure they get paid - reduced its cover for the group. Reliable industry sources say another credit insurer, Euler Hermes, is also considering cutting cover. - The Sunday Times
The top flight index recovered some ground on Friday, but mostly on account of weakness in Sterling after German Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly echoed other European Union officials, saying "the most difficult phase is ahead of us".
The focus in the coming week will continue to be on the ebb and flow of data out of the US, including Republicans' progress on securing passage of their tax cuts.
Wall Street is heading higher again on Friday amid news that Republicans were tweaking their proposed tax cuts in order to secure prompt passage of the US tax bill.
The chief executive of French planemaker Airbus will step down from his position in 2019 as the company announced a major shake-up of its management team.
London’s FTSE 250 was up 0.1% to 20,023.23 in afternoon trade on Friday as the Christmas lull kicked in.
Industrial production in the States rose slightly less quickly than expected last month, despite higher output of business equipment and materials.
Diversified mineral production and development company Strategic Minerals announced on Friday that, after the successful completion of technical and financial due diligence on the Leigh Creek Copper Mine company, it has agreed to continue with the acquisition on renegotiated terms.
London’s FTSE 100 was up 0.3% to 7,469.23 in quiet afternoon trade on Friday.
International esports entertainment group Gfinity has been named as a preferred event partner to Microsoft for the forthcoming ‘Halo World Championship 2018’ for the next season, it announced on Friday.