Sector movers: Miners lead as PBoC adds liquidity, lenders pace losses
Food producers paced gains in the stock market at the start of the week with shares of Cranswick at the head of the pack.
The company guided towards full-year results ahead of previous guidance following a strong showing during the first quarter of its financial year as Britons stayed at home.
Commenting on the firm's results, analysts at ShoreCap told clients that the 21.4 times their estimate for 2021 profits that the shares were trading was warranted given what it said was a "premium" business.
"Premium ratings for a premium business in our view that looks very well set to continue to drive sustained medium to long-term growth, robust ongoing net cash generation and deliver attractive high--teens returns."
The biggest boost to markets as a whole however came from miners, after the People's Bank of China provided 700bn yuan of liquidity to commercial lenders via a reverse repo auction, which was more than analysts had been anticipating.
In a further fillip for miners, reports on Monday morning were that the progress review on the US-China phase one trade deal which had been scheduled for Saturday had not been cancelled but merely postponed for a bit which would give China some breathing room.
Precious metals miners also performed well again as gold futures rallied 2.36% to 1,995.9/oz. on COMEX.
Not lost on traders was news out after the close of trading during the previous session that Berkshire Hathaway had broken its self-imposed restriction on purchases of the 'yellow metal' in the form of shares in Barrick Gold.
Pharmaceuticals were also wanted, with further gains for German Covid-19 vaccine manufacturer, CureVac, following its Friday flotation in New York helping sentiment towards the likes of AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline.
Lenders' shares were the main drag amid concerns among some analysts - although not all - that a more prolonged recovery might entail more accommodative central bank policies for longer.
Indeed, according to Berkshires's quarterly filings with the SEC from 15 August, which had revealed the purchases of Barrick, in parallel the industrial conglomerate had slashed its positions in US lenders, especially Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan, and Wells Fargo to a much lesser extent, as well as in Occidental Petroleum.
Echoing that view, on Monday, Deutsche Bank analysts could be seen telling clients: "Excess liquidity increases rate sensitivity of UK banks and suppresses NIMs while there is still risk of rate cuts.
"Resilient asset quality and higher coverage ratios are welcome but unemployment is too uncertain to materially change the outlook. We remain cautious on UK banks and prefer banks with less rate sensitivity, more diverse income, flexible cost bases and at lower valuations. Our preference is BARC (BUY, 135p) and VM (BUY, 105p) over NWG (SELL, 100p) and LLOY (HOLD, 32p). Among the global banks we prefer STAN (HOLD, 415p) over HSBC (SELL, 300p)."
Top performing sectors so far today
Food Producers & Processors 6,819.77 +2.73%
Mining 19,132.20 +1.96%
Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology 18,084.72 +1.89%
Tobacco 26,781.49 +1.88%
Chemicals 12,374.89 +1.68%
Bottom performing sectors so far today
Fixed Line Telecommunications 1,307.78 -1.69%
Automobiles & Parts 3,092.72 -1.51%
Oil Equipment, Services & Distribution 4,326.84 -1.20%
Oil & Gas Producers 4,391.75 -1.09%
Banks 2,085.40 -0.97%
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