(Alliance News) - The following stocks are the leading risers and fallers within the main London indices on Thursday.
FTSE 100 - WINNERS
Kingfisher, up 3.8%. The DIY retailer appointed Carrefour executive Thierry Garnier as its new chief executive to replace outgoing CEO Veronique Laury. The B&Q chain owner said Garnier spent 20 years in senior roles at Carrefour, the French hypermarket operator. Garnier currently serves as the head of Carrefour Asia, where he is responsible for over 350 stores in China and Taiwan. From 2003 to 2008, Garnier was the managing director of supermarkets for Carrefour France. Laury - who was appointed as CEO in 2015 - will step down from the board by the end of September, while the effective date of Garnier's appointment will be announced "as soon as it is finalised".
Vodafone, up 2.0%. Shares in the telecommunications firm were up after Reuters reported the Vodafone's deal with Liberty Global is set to secure EU antitrust approval after concessions were made. Late on Wednesday, Reuters reported Vodafone offered to strengthen rival Telefonica Deutschland by giving it access to its merged high-speed broadband network. This was after the European Commission said the deal may reduce competition in Germany and the Czech Republic. Reuters was citing sources familiar with the matter.
FTSE 100 - LOSERS
Rightmove, down 2.2%. UBS downgraded the property portal to Sell from Neutral.
British Land, down 1.6%, British American Tobacco, down 1.4%, Experian, down 1.1%. The stocks went ex-dividend meaning new buyers no longer qualify for the latest payout.
FTSE 250 - WINNERS
Metro Bank, up 6.7%. Investec raised the challenger bank to Buy from Hold.
Serco Group, up 5.0%. The outsourcer said it will deliver double-digit profit growth in the first half of its current financial year as it benefits from favourable currency movements and the adoption of the new accounting standard for leases. Serco said it expects to deliver over 20% growth in underlying trading profit in the six months to Sunday, with revenue growth around 6%. In 2018, Serco's first-half underlying trading profit totalled GBP37.6 million on revenue of GBP1.37 billion, meaning that the company expects about GBP45 million and GBP1.45 billion in the first half, respectively. Serco said its growth was driven by the Americas and Asia Pacific divisions. This includes currency movements that have been modestly favourable, the company said, increasing revenue by GBP20 million and underlying trading profit by about GBP1 million to GBP2 million. Looking ahead, Serco said it expects its 2019 revenue to be around the top end of the previously stated GBP2.9 billion to GBP3.0 billion range. In 2018, revenue was GBP2.84 billion.
Greene King, up 4.3%. The pub operator reported a decrease in annual profit but saw its revenue increase on the warm summer weather coupled with the men's football World Cup. In the 52 weeks ended April 28, the brewer saw its pretax profit decrease 13% to GBP172.8 million from GBP197.5 million the year before. The profit decrease was attributed to a 63% rise in exceptional items in the year to GBP74.1 million - which included a GBP90.1 million impairment charge relating to the company's properties. Excluding exceptional items, the company's pretax profit increased 1.6% to GBP246.9 million and revenue increased 4.1% year-on-year to GBP2.17 billion from GBP2.18 billion.
FTSE 250 - LOSERS
Senior, down 11%. Barclays cut the aerospace and defence engineer to Equal Weight from Overweight.
OTHER MAIN MARKET AND AIM - WINNERS
Edenville Energy, up 6.8%. The coal project developer reported the start of mining at the new northern mining area of its flagship Rukwa coal project. Edenville said following the completion of the work carried out on the haul road which runs from the plant to the northern area of Rukwa, mining has commenced. Edenville said overburden was removed to allow access to the coal seam and coal is being progressively exposed for excavation and transport to the wash plant. Batch processing of fine coal from the stockpiles through the pre-screen produced encouraging results, the company said, which showed that 40% of the stockpiled fine coal can be reclassified as sized coal product, which will be available for washing or direct sale. Looking ahead, Edenville said it remains in discussions with potential buyers of fine coal, whilst also exploring other opportunities available with regards to sales of fine coal.
OTHER MAIN MARKET AND AIM - LOSERS
Pendragon, down 5.2%. The car dealer said recently appointed Chief Executive Mark Herbert will be leaving the company by "mutual agreement" from the end of June. Herbert became permanent boss of Pendragon on April 1, replacing 29-year company veteran Trevor Finn. In his short stint with the company, Herbert launched a strategic review of the business following a profit warning in June. The company warned that it would post a small underlying loss for 2019 due to challenging market conditions and excess stock across the business. The company in June guided the GBP11.9 million operating loss suffered by its Car Store business in 2018 to accelerate to around GBP25 million in 2019 due to "execution inefficiency" and an increase in used car stock at the end of 2018 to GBP485 million from GBP372 million a year before, leading to excess stock held across Pendragon's business. Pendragon on Thursday said it has commenced a formal process to recruit and appoint a new chief executive officer and a further announcement will be made in due course
(Alliance News) - London stocks were down at midday Thursday after Bank of England policymakers kept UK interest rates unchanged, while cutting its forecast for the country's economic index or