Date: Wednesday 02 May 2012
- Market Movers
- techMARK 2,034.22 -0.42%
- FTSE 100 5,784.45 -0.48%
- FTSE 250 11,500.89 -0.03%
LONDON (ShareCast) - - Eurozone jobless rate matches 1997-high
- Eurozone manufacturing takes a hammering
- Banks among the fallers, StanChart falls after first-quarter update
London's blue chips slumped on Wednesday morning while most other major European markets traded moderately higher as they reacted to yesterday's upbeat ISM manufacturing data from the US. Just a handful of markets were open on Tuesday, including the UK and US, as most were closed for May Day.
Weighing on the FTSE 100 today has been several gloomy economic indicators. Major economies across Europe reported declines in manufacturing output in April. Across the Eurozone Markit's manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) dropped to 45.9 in April, down from 47.7 in March. Anything under 50 denotes a contraction in output and the latest figure comes close to a three-year low.
Even Germany, the economic powerhouse of the single-currency region, saw manufacturing fall from 48.4 to 46.2. What's more, the German labour market is starting to show its first signs of weakness, with the seasonally-adjusted number of unemployed rising unexpectedly by 19,000 last month.
The Eurozone unemployment rate rose from 10.8% to 10.9% in March, the highest level in nearly 15 years. The numbers will add impetus to claims that European politicians are focusing too strongly on austerity and this approach is damaging growth.
Meanwhile, HSBC's Chinese manufacturing PMI improved from a flash estimate of 49.1 to 49.3 in April, up from the 48.3 level in March. However, any reading below 50 still marks a contraction. This is a sharp contrast to another PMI reading yesterday (from the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing) while rose from 53.1 to 53.3.
FTSE 100: Standard Chartered leads banks lower
Standard Chartered said its broad geographic base once again helped it secure a strong start to the year with "high single-digit income growth" in the first quarter. However, it admitted that growth had been hit by the continued strength of the US dollar against Asian currencies. Shares were lower early on.
Sector peers Barclays, Lloyds and RBS were also out of favour following a strong performance the day before.
Insurance group Admiral was a heavy faller early on after going ex-dividend. ARM Holdings, Kingfisher and Xstrata were also trading without the right to their latest dividends.
Broadcaster and broadband group BSkyB was making gains after reporting record nine-month operating profit. Meanwhile, the firm insisted it was 'fit and proper to hold its broadcasting licences' as the fall-out from the News Corporation hacking scandal continues.
Fashion chain Next rose after sticking with full-year guidance given in March after first quarter sales showed a small year-on-year improvement, helped by contributions from new stores.
Shares in oil and gas group BG advanced after it announced the first production from its Margarita gas field in Bolivia.
FTSE 250: Home Retail disappoints
Argos and Homebase owner Home Retail dropped after it revealed a 9% decline in like-for-like sales as pre-tax profit plunged 60% after particular weakness in consumer electronics.
Fund manager Henderson fell after seeing net outflows in the first quarter of 2012 despite assets under management having grown on the back of the recovery in equities.
Meanwhile, Kesa Electricals, Morgan Crucible and Renishaw were performing strongly after broker upgrades. Goldman Sachs upgraded Kesa from sell to neutral, while Barclays Capital lifted both Morgan Crucible and Renishaw from equal weight to overweight and hiked its target prices.
FTSE 100 - Risers
British Sky Broadcasting Group (BSY) 709.00p +2.60%
Next (NXT) 2,964.00p +2.35%
Burberry Group (BRBY) 1,515.00p +2.16%
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) 1,501.00p +1.15%
Tate & Lyle (TATE) 703.50p +1.08%
Whitbread (WTB) 1,965.00p +0.98%
Johnson Matthey (JMAT) 2,362.00p +0.94%
BG Group (BG.) 1,462.50p +0.83%
Serco Group (SRP) 557.00p +0.81%
Rexam (REX) 436.80p +0.81%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Admiral Group (ADM) 1,157.00p -3.58%
Barclays (BARC) 218.75p -3.29%
Man Group (EMG) 94.70p -3.17%
Standard Chartered (STAN) 1,465.00p -3.11%
Schroders (Non-Voting) (SDRC) 1,114.00p -2.02%
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 32.96p -1.89%
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,675.00p -1.70%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,170.00p -1.60%
Royal Dutch Shell 'A' (RDSA) 2,181.00p -1.47%
ITV (ITV) 84.40p -1.46%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Kesa Electricals (KESA) 57.40p +5.42%
Rank Group (RNK) 118.50p +4.41%
Salamander Energy (SMDR) 210.80p +3.94%
Bumi (BUMI) 543.50p +3.52%
Drax Group (DRX) 570.50p +3.45%
Yule Catto & Co (YULC) 239.80p +3.10%
Morgan Crucible Co (MGCR) 339.70p +2.85%
CSR (CSR) 228.40p +2.51%
Bellway (BWY) 806.50p +2.48%
Cape (CIU) 416.70p +2.36%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Home Retail Group (HOME) 91.80p -9.11%
Henderson Group (HGG) 116.70p -4.66%
Cable & Wireless Worldwide (CW.) 33.52p -4.23%
Chemring Group (CHG) 378.50p -3.42%
FirstGroup (FGP) 194.30p -3.09%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 123.20p -2.99%
Talvivaara Mining Company (TALV) 182.50p -2.82%
Michael Page International (MPI) 409.90p -2.73%
PayPoint (PAY) 645.00p -2.71%
Brown (N.) Group (BWNG) 235.50p -2.61%
FTSE TechMARK - Risers
Kewill (KWL) 95.25p +25.33%
Asterand (ATD) 2.88p +9.52%
Wolfson Microelectronics (WLF) 200.25p +8.68%
Ark Therapeutics Group (AKT) 4.00p +7.38%
Pace (PIC) 77.75p +2.30%
Timeweave (TMW) 21.50p +1.78%
BATM Advanced Communications Ltd. (BVC) 15.50p +1.64%
DRS Data & Research Services (DRS) 21.75p +1.16%
Optos (OPTS) 258.50p +0.58%
Dialight (DIA) 1,026.00p +0.39%
FTSE TechMARK - Fallers
Kofax (KFX) 265.50p -9.31%
Antisoma (ASM) 1.70p -4.23%
Skyepharma (SKP) 78.50p -3.68%
Vectura Group (VEC) 69.75p -2.45%
RM (RM.) 87.00p -2.25%
Torotrak (TRK) 36.50p -2.01%
Promethean World (PRW) 51.00p -1.92%
Psion (PON) 55.00p -1.79%
Sepura (SEPU) 60.00p -1.64%
Anite (AIE) 122.00p -1.21%