Sharecast News
05 Feb, 2021 17:46

Weekly review

The FTSE 100 ended the week 81.87 points higher, closing at 6,489.33 on Friday.

Equity view

Global Infrastructure Partners has teamed up with rival bidders Blackstone and Microsoft founder Bill Gates to make a $4.73bn (£3.43bn) bid for Signature Aviation, the companies said on Friday.

AstraZeneca said on Friday that its Imfinzi (durvalumab) drug failed to meet its primary endpoint in a Phase III trial for head and neck cancers.

On the Beach said it expected holiday bookings to stay subdued into the second half of 2021 as the online vacation retailer reported tough trading caused by the Covid-19 crisis.

Beazley plunged to an annual loss and paid no dividend as the Lloyd’s of London insurer was hit by $340m (£249m) of losses from the Covid-19 crisis.

Unilever increased its fourth-quarter dividend as the consumer goods company reported improved underlying sales growth.

FTSE 250 food producer Cranswick said its performance for the current financial year is set to be ahead of the board’s previous expectations, after strong revenue and earnings momentum in the first half continued into the third quarter.

Compass told shareholders it was sorry for substandard free school meal packages as the catering group said revenue fell by a third in the first quarter with no pickup expected in the second quarter.

British telecoms operator BT Group said it was on track to meet full-year forecasts despite a fall in third quarter core earnings.

GlaxoSmithKline and CureVac on Wednesday announced a new venture to develop a vaccine targeting emerging variants of Covid-19 in one jab.

Hungarian budget carrier Wizz Air said January passenger numbers plunged 81.8% year on year as the new variants of the coronavirus and travel bans battered demand.

Anglo American updated the market on the value of rough diamond sales for the first sales cycle for 2021 at De Beers on Wednesday, with total provisional sales coming in at $650m (£476.04m).

Glencore kept its 2021 production guidance in place after coronavirus-related restrictions and the closure of its Mutanda mine reduced output of several commodities in 2020.

SSE backed its full-year guidance on Tuesday as it said it expects to take a £200m hit to full-year operating profit from the Covid-19 crisis.

Polypipe said on Tuesday that it had acquired heating systems supplier Nu-Heat Holdings for a total of £27.0m on a cash-free, debt-free basis.

Support services company DCC said on Tuesday that group operating profit for its third quarter was “strongly ahead” of the prior year.

LondonMetric has acquired £21.9m of convenience service stations across three separate transactions, it announced on Tuesday, reflecting a blended net initial yield of 5.1%.

B2B information services provider Euromoney Institutional Investor said on Monday that it has bought price reporting agency (PRA) The Jacobsen for $12.25m.

Ryanair reported a slump in third-quarter revenues on Monday, as it forecast a near-€1bn annual loss for "the most challenging year" in its 35-year history.

BP has agreed to sell a 20% stake in a gas field in Oman to Thailand’s national oil company, PTT Exploration and Production (PTTEP), for $2.6bn.

Hargreaves Lansdown increased its interim dividend as the company reported a 10% rise in first-half profit and attracted younger investors.

Economic news

UK house prices dipped in January, suggesting that the recent property market boom may be slowing down.

Retail sales fell last week as a doubling of non-store business failed to offset plunging transactions in shops, a survey showed.

Britain's new car market fell 39.5% in January as 59,030 fewer registrations were made compared to the same month a year ago.

UK construction sector activity unexpectedly contracted in January as the third national lockdown took its toll, according to a survey released on Thursday.

The UK’s services sector suffered the sharpest decline in business activity in January in eight months, but the rollout of Covid-19 vaccines helped to lift optimism to its highest since May 2014, according to a survey released on Wednesday.

UK government minister Michael Gove admitted that Brexit border delays were more than “teething problems” as he asked the EU for an extension to 2023 of grace periods for full checks on goods traded between Britain and Northern Ireland.

UK house price growth has started to slow ahead of the stamp duty holiday coming to an end, industry research showed on Tuesday.

Grocery spending spiked in the last three months, boosted by Christmas and the re-introduction of lockdown measures, industry data showed on Tuesday.

UK mortgage approvals fell in December but beat expectations to send the total for 2020 to the highest since the financial crisis.

UK manufacturing growth slowed to a three-month low in January, dented by further Covid-19 restrictions, according to a survey released on Monday.

International events

German factory orders fell more than expected in December as coronavirus lockdowns took their toll, according to figures released by Destatis on Friday.

America's Senate narrowly approved the Biden administration's $1.9trn coronavirus aid package.

Eurozone retail sales rose in December but fell short of expectations as trading varied greatly between countries depending on the level of Covid-19 restrictions.

US jobless claims continued slipping lower over the previous week, hitting a nine-week low, albeit while remaining at exceedingly elevated levels.

The eurozone's economy is on course for a return to recession after output shrank at a faster pace in January because of tougher Covid-19 restrictions.

Growth in China’s services sector slowed notably in January, data published on Wednesday showed.

Activity in the Eurozone economy eased in the last three months of 2020, official data showed on Tuesday, after countries introduced fresh lockdown measures.

Richard Branson added $1.8bn to his personal wealth in under a month after shares in Virgin Galactic were targeted by traders on Reddit, triggering a surge in their value.

German chemicals giant Bayer has inked a deal to manufacture CureVac's Covid-19 vaccine candidate.

The distribution of vaccines in the United States isn’t living up to Biden’s campaign promises to “move heaven and earth” to improve the prior administration's rollout plan.


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Important Legal Notice about News Sources

Pilling and Co Stockbrokers Ltd. is not responsible for the content or accuracy of third party news articles and we may not share the views of the author or publisher.

We provide third party news for your convenience and information only and make no representation or endorsement whatsoever and hereby exclude all liability for any loss or damage that may be incurred by you as a result of your access or use. Please note that third party content may be subject to terms and conditions imposed by the third party owner of that content.