Miners drive the Footsie higher| MENAFN.COM

Saturday, 04 February 2023 11:57 GMT

Miners drive the Footsie higher


(MENAFN- ProactiveInvestors - UK) Driven by miners, the Footsie briefly broke back above the 6,300 barrier before ebbing to 6,273 for a 64 point rise on the day.

Mining giants occupied the top five slots on the FTSE 100 leader board, with Anglo American PLC (LON:AAL) the pick of the bunch, up 11.1%, as the wilting dollar made minerals cheaper on international markets.

If the greenback was having a hard time, so was sterling, as markets go the jitters about the apparent increased likelihood of Britons voting for an exit from the European Union.

Even against the US currency, which is about as popular a wet suit in a bridal costumiers at the moment as the prospect of a US interest rate rise in June recedes, sterling shed two-thirds of a cent today.

House builders were out of favour, with Barratt Developments (LON:BEV), Persimmon PLC (LON:PSN) and Taylor Wimpey PLC (LON:TW) all down by more than 1%.

The progress of the FTSE Aim 100 index was more sedate than that of the Footsie, with the junior market's gauge rising five points (0.2%) to 3,503. The broader-based FTSE Aim All-share was up a point (0.1%) at 743.

Central and Eastern Europe-focused property company Kimberly Enterprise NV (LON:KBE) was hands-down the top performer in London, soaring 376% to 2.5p, as it said it could be quids-in as a result of a request from the mayor of Belgrade to terminate the lease agreement on the Marina Dorcol project.

The company estimates the termination would increase the company's equity by 18.4mln. The company's stock market value rose to 1.94mln.

Independent Resources plc (LON:IRG) shot up 48% as Brandon Hill Capital increased its shareholding through market purchases of 16,862,820 ordinary shares at 0.066p each.

Brandon Hill now holds 91,862,820 ordinary shares in the company, representing around 7.28% of the company's issued share capital.

Shares in Swallowfield plc (LON:SWL) soared after the personal care and beauty product group bought a company and unveiled plans to raise up to 8.6mln in a placing.

The stock rose 34.5p, or 21%, to 197.5p as Swallowfield said it had conditionally agreed to acquire The Brand Architekts.

Herencia Resources PLC (LON:HER) was the heaviest faller, slumping almost a third to 0.0275p as it dispatched a notice to convene its annual general meeting, which reminded investors the company would be seeking approval to change the nominal value of the shares, which is normally a prelude to a share issue.

The UK tax-man is going to extraordinary lengths to try to prevent 'Spot the Ball' competition runner Sportech plc (LON:SPO) reclaiming 97mln in value added tax (VAT).

A 'sweetheart' deal of the sort negotiated with multi-national companies such as Google appears to be out of the question for the humble football pools firm, as it was announced today that Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs (HMRC), which last month had been denied permission to appeal to the Supreme Court against the Court of Appeal's unanimous decision in favour of Sportech in the VAT dispute, has now applied directly to the Supreme Court for permission to appeal the Court of Appeal's unanimous judgement.

Mid-session

London's blue-chips built on early gains as the weak pound appeared to be propping up stocks.

The FTSE 100 Index rose 62 points to 6271 in lunchtime trading in London as sterling dropped amid EU referendum fears.

The top five blue-chip risers were all miners as the price of a barrel of Brent Crude Oil rose 1.3% to US$50.28. Anglo American PLC (LON:AAL) was the biggest beneficiary, up 8.9% at 672.9p.

House builders led the fallers, with Barratt Developments PLC (LON:BDEV) the largest loser, down 1.56% at 569p.

Sterling dropped nearly 1% against the dollar and the euro as a few polls showed that the Vote Leave campaign in the UK's EU referendum was gaining ground.

Connor Campbell at spread-betting firm Spreadex said: "It appears that the weakened pound, which has lost around 2% in value in the last two weeks, is supporting the FTSE's run, as are the huge gains seen by the likes of Anglo American."

Small-cap indices were in positive territory, with the FTSE AIM 100 rising 6.5 points to 3505 and the FTSE AIM All-Share gaining two points to 744.

Personal care and beauty product group Swallowfield PLC (LON:SWL) lost its top spot in the all-share risers to Independent Resources (LON:IRG) as Brandon Hill Capital increased its stake in the company to about 7.28%.

Shares in Independent Resources, which has several assets under development including a major oil prospect in Tunisia and a major underground gas store in north-east Italy rose 33.3% to 0.11p.

Swallowfield was still second, rising 24.2% to 202.5p on news of an acquisition and placing.

Wishbone Gold (LON:WSBN) pared some of its earlier gains to stand 13% ahead at 0.61p as it agreed a US$3mln two-year loan facility from Sanderson Capital Partners to support its gold trading arm.

Solo Oil PLC (LON:SOLO) lost 1.85% to 0.26p after updating the market on its Kiliwani North production operations in Tanzania.

Shares in Tekcapital PLC (LON:TEK) lifted 1.7% to 45.75p on news that it had bought a US patent for a healthier alternative to salt, but Hardide Plc (LON:HDD) lost falling 12% to 0.72p, as the oil & gas and aerospace engineer reported a hit from lower oil prices and said it was considering potential funding options "as a precautionary measure".

Keras Resources PLC (LON:KRS) backtracked 4.35% to 1.1p after the Western Australian gold miner secured an additional deposit under an existing deal with Paddington Gold Pty Ltd.

Mariana Resources Ltd (LON:MARL) which has gold, silver & copper projects in Turkey and South America, slipped 2% to 3.68p after chief operating officer Eric Roth sold 2,800,000 shares in the company.

Market preview

The FTSE 100 is set to start the week in positive territory with the prospect of a hike to US interest rates receding.

The index of blue chip stocks will open 32 points higher at 6,241.63, according to London's spread betting firms.

The direction of American borrowing costs has been a pre-occupation for months now with the market expecting the Fed to pull the trigger later this month or July at the latest.

Friday's unexpectedly weak jobs data threw that debate wide open.

'Initial Fed reaction to Friday's numbers came from Lael Brainard in a speech a few hours after the release of the numbers, where she warned unsurprisingly that given the weakness seen so far in the most recent second-quarter data that a policy of wait and see was probably appropriate,' said Michael Hewson of CMC Markets.

'More importantly will be the tone of Janet Yellen's speech later today given her and other Fed official's bullishness about the US labour market and the US economy in general.

'In essence it is going to be enormously difficult for the Fed to steer itself out of the corner it has painted itself into having so deliberately built up market expectations in the manner they have in the past few weeks.'

In Asia, the picture was mixed. The weaker dollar pushed up the comparative value of the yen, which then hit Japan's export sector. The Nikkei 225 was down 0.6%.

Stocks indexes in Shanghai and Hong Kong were off 0.1% and 0.3%, while there was natural resources led rally in Australia, which added 0.7%.

Brent crude is trading 0.7% higher at US$49.98. Gold is up 0.3% at US$1.244.10. Market rumour: Britain's biggest holiday park operator Parkdean Resorts is edging closer to a 1bn-plus flotation after reporting a strong increase in bookings this year. City Headlines

*Sir Martin Sorrell is facing a shareholder rebellion over his 70mln pay package as chief executive of WPP, with a significant minority of investors expected to vote against the advertising group's remuneration report on Wednesday Times.

*Sir Philip Green has made no new approach to pensions authorities about restructuring the BHS pension scheme, it has emerged, despite claims he was trying to broker a last-minute deal Telegraph.


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