ADVFN Morning London Market Report: Monday 8 July 2019

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London open: Stocks steady ahead of busy week

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London stocks were steady in early trade on Monday as investors continued to mull last week’s better-than-expected non-farm payrolls report and looked ahead to some key events later in the week.

At 0830 BST, the FTSE 100 was flat at 7,556.46, while the pound was down 0.1% against the dollar and the euro at 1.2515 and 1.1150, respectively.

Spreadex analyst Connor Campbell said: “It is one of those weeks that currently appears to be centred around a single day. Here that’d be Wednesday, which sees the Chinese inflation readings, the monthly UK GDP and manufacturing figures and, most importantly, the minutes from June’s dovish, market-lifting Fed meeting.

“Following last Friday’s surprisingly perky non-farm jobs report, and the announcement of a US/China trade truce before that, an element of doubt has entered investors’ minds regarding whether or not the Fed will actually cut rates this month, so they will be keen to see what exactly was said in the central bank’s last get-together.”

In equity markets, Imperial Brands was the standout gainer on the top-flight index as the company announced a share buyback worth up to £200m and said it was revising its dividend policy. The tobacco company reaffirmed its 10% dividend growth for the current financial year and said the revised dividend policy thereafter will be progressive, growing annually from the current level, taking into account the performance of the underlying business.

Acacia Mining advanced as it said second-quarter gold production rose 19% year-on-year to 158,774 ounces mainly due to higher production at its North Mara mine in Tanzania.

IAG flew a touch lower as it said its British Airways airline faces a £183.4m fine from the Information Commissioner’s Office for last year’s breach of its security systems.

Hiscox suffered heavy losses after a downgrade to ‘sell’ from ‘hold’ at Canaccord Genuity, which also cut its stance on Lancashire Holdings and Beazley to ‘hold’ from ‘buy’.

Elsewhere, 3i Infrastructure was cut to ‘underperform’ at Jefferies, while Inchcape and Severn Trent were downgraded to ‘neutral’ and ‘underweight’ at JPMorgan, respectively.

Barclays lifted Computacenter to ‘equalweight’ but cut CRH and Schroders to ‘equalweight’.

 

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