Shares in Renishaw gain as much as 6 percent to touch their highest level since Sept 2008 after the British precision engineer triples its full-year adjusted pretax profit and says it started the new year with a record order book.
Analyst Keith Ashworth-Lord at WH Ireland Securities says the results, at the top-end of expectations, show a strong bounce-back from the recession.
He raises his price target on the 'market perform'-rated stock to 840 pence from 800 pence and says, 'The shares have been strong performers of late and now stand within reach of our revised target price.'
Michael Blogg at Arbuthnot says he expects to upgrade his estimates for the company by between 5 and 10 percent.
Shares in Walker Greenbank rise more than 18 percent after the luxury furnishings maker forecasts first-half results significantly ahead of its own view, helped by customer restocking and strong performance of its brands.
'The strategy of steady and consistent investment in new product suggests that the group brands will continue to outperform the remainder of their UK competitors in the foreseeable future,' say analysts Nigel Harrison and Neil Shah at Edison Investment Research.
'The group strengths which have contributed to this progress are not recognised in the share price,' the broker adds.
Shares in Synergy Health fall 3.8 percent after the provider of sterilisation services to hospitals reports an in line first-quarter update, which prompts KBC Peel Hunt to downgrade its rating to 'hold' from 'buy' on valuation grounds.
'We think the shares are now fairly valued, and drop our rating to hold pending further contracts wins in UK/EU decontamination and tangible progress on new units in China,' KBC Peel Hunt says in a note.
Synergy's shares have risen 30 percent from the 2010 low hit on June 1.
The broker says Synergy is currently trading on 14 times 2011 price earnings -- a modest premium to UK service peers CareTech, Davis Service Group , EU/US technology led sterilisation companies Getinge and Steris -- all trading on 13 times price earnings.
'We continue to see long term upside for shares based on government desire to outsource capital expenditure and desire for greater efficiency in service provision.'
Shares in Mwana Africa rise as much as 17 percent after the miner announces a near doubling in estimated resources at its 80 percent owned Zani-Kodo gold mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Indicated gold resources are estimated at 260,000 ounces, an 18 percent rise since February, while less certain inferred resources are estimated at 1.0 million ounces, a 140 percent surge.
'Although some 80 percent is in the inferred category, the company highlights well defined boundaries to the mineralised zone, indicating that a high proportion should convert to the indicated category,' says Brock Salier, analyst at Ambrian Capital.
'Resources of this size and grade in the more mature West African gold sector would have a market value of over $100 million,' he adds.
Shares in Invensys are the top FTSE 100 fallers, off 5 percent after the engineer issues a trading update, with Evolution Securities cutting 2011 forecasts as the firm's rail division has incurred charges.
'The Invensys IMS (interim management statement) is fine for IOM (Invensys Operations Management) and Controls, but Rail will take a 13 million pound hit as additional implementation costs on three mass transit contracts have been incurred,' Evolution says in a note.
The broker says that as a consequence, it is going to have to lower its EBIT forecast for the year to March 2011 by 13 million pounds, to 272 million pounds from 285 million pounds, but leaves its 2012 and 2013 forecasts unchanged.
'What should not be lost is that underlying trading remains encouraging and positive and any weakness today represents a buying opportunity,' Evolution says.
Shares in Air Partner Plc rise as much as 7 percent after the charter-plane supplier forecasts full-year underlying profits to be ahead of its revised expectations and says trading was good throughout the fourth quarter.
'We regard today's update as the catalyst needed for confidence that the recovery is indeed well established,' says analyst Keith Ashworth-Lord of WH Ireland Securities, upgrading the stock to 'buy' from 'outperform'.
'The Air Partner franchise is intact and the shares represent an excellent recovery play,' he adds.
The FTSE Small Cap index is flat in early trade, underperforming both the blue chips and the midcaps, which rise 0.4 percent and 0.1 percent respectively.
Vatukoula Gold Mines adds 5.6 percent as the firm says gold recoveries for the fourth quarter have reached 12,940 ounces, bringing total recoveries in the year to date to 51,491 ounces -- higher than its revised 50,000 ounce annual forecast for the year ended August 2010.
Eleco slides more than 16 percent as the firm says that markedly improved profits from its software operations will be more than offset by significantly greater than anticipated losses from its building systems operations.
Shares in Brit Insurance rise 10.78 percent to 1,012 pence, the highest gainer on the FTSE 250, after U.S. buyout firm Apollo Management raised its takeover bid for the Lloyd's of London insurer.
'Apollo's increased offer at 1,075 pence is likely to be the main driver of the shares today and should support the shares while due diligence happens over the next few weeks,' says Tom Dorner at Oriel Securities in a note.
He adds that the group also delivered strong first-half results, with the underwriting results considerably better than expected.
Shares in Compass Group rise 2.2 percent after the world's biggest caterer reports a surge in organic growth and a robust outlook, prompting Seymour Pierce to raise its target price to 615 pence from 575 pence and repeat its 'buy' rating.
Compass, which counts Chelsea Football Club, London's O2 arena, the Bank of England and the U.S. Senate among its clients, reports a sharp acceleration in organic revenue growth, recording a 5.5 percent increase, following growth of 2.5 percent in the second-quarter 2010.
'This is a very strong performance,' says Seymour Pierce in a note, adding that it even topped French peer Sodexo, which recently recorded growth of 4.9 percent in the third-quarter.
'This set of results from Compass show that the company is successfully delivering its strategy of driving strong organic revenue growth whilst recording sustainable profit and margin improvement.'
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