The FTSE 100 gets a second wind as the American indices open much higher


The big takeoff in the United States gave London’s blue chips a little boost, thanks to which the FTSE 100 improved to 5,567, up 151 points (2.8%).

  • FTSE 100 jumps 151 points
  • American indices open higher
  • Avacta sought after increasing its fundraising goal

3:00 p.m .: US stocks start quickly

As expected, the US indices opened the week on a high note, the main indices increasing by more than 4%.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 996 points (4.7%) to 22,048 while the S&P 500 jumped 113 points (4.6%) to 2,601.

The big takeoff in the United States gave London’s blue chips a little boost, thanks to which the FTSE 100 improved to 5,567, up 151 points (2.8%).

Far from the big caps, () has succeeded in the rare trick of raising funds and seeing its price increase.

The developer of Affimer biotherapeutics and research reagents has announced a proposed placement of shares to raise £ 3.75 million. The shares are placed at 18p per share. Avacta shares are currently trading at 23p, up 12.2%.

Investors are also taking over the owner of Wagamama’s restaurants () after his lenders gave him additional flexibility in the form of increased loan facilities.

The shares rose 6.5% to 38p.

1:45 p.m .: American indices open much higher

The US evidence should open much higher in the hope that there may be light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel.

Spread betting prices indicate that the Dow Jones industrial average will open around 789 points to 21,842, while the S&P 500 is expected to open at 2,583, up 94 points.

“This would bring the Dow Jones to 21,850, at the upper end of the 21,000 to 22,000 position range it crossed last week,” said Connor Campbell, financial analyst at.

In London, the FTSE 100 rose 111 points (2.1%) to 5,527, not far from the level, after trading about 10 points on each side of this level in the past three hours.

The gains were tempered by the resumption of the British pound’s fortunes in the foreign exchange markets, with the pound increasing by a fifth of a cent to US $ 1.288.

Oil giants () and () also weigh on the index as Brent crude oil prices for June delivery slide 88 cents to US $ 33.23 per barrel.

BP was down 0.9% and Shell down 0.6%.

The Leviathan GlaxoSmtihkline PLC () drug index, which today announced collaboration with Vir Biotechnology to fund coronavirus solutions, is also underperforming. Glaxo shares rose 0.2% to 1,492.4p.

12:15 p.m .: Footsie consolidates morning gains as traders await successful Japanese stimulus package

The Japanese government is preparing to launch a recovery plan of around £ 811 billion this month, a commitment that overshadows similar plans, such as those of the United States.

“The economic stimulus measures proposed by Japan seem to be particularly important compared to other countries. If the plan continues as shown, the total amount would be 16-17% of the country’s GDP, overshadowing other regimes, including that of the United States, which is equivalent to 10% of its GDP. The huge stimulus package is a very positive step on the part of Prime Minister Abe’s government, ”said Naoya Oshikubo, senior economist at SuMi TRUST.

“The government seems to be looking for a package on a scale of more than 60 trillion yen, with budgetary expenditures of more than 20 trillion yen. In addition, economic measures valued at 26 trillion yen were announced in late 2019.

“As part of this package, the government plans to guarantee 100% of bank loans to SMEs, which is particularly important since the overall short-term liabilities of SMEs in Japan are around 40 trillion yen. If this measure goes ahead, it should be very effective in preventing bankruptcies.

“However, the markets have already started to price the price of a 60 trillion yen economic stimulus package, including tax expenditures of 20 trillion yen. This means that, unless the measures announced are even more important than expected, short-term market sentiment will not improve, the yen will not weaken and the stock market will not rally, “he said. declared.

Of course, Naoya Oshikubo talks about the Japanese market; In London, the rally is underway while investors are sensitive to the latest figures on coronaviruses, even if they are a little vague.

“The number of confirmed cases in the United States only increased 8.4% yesterday, well below the previous trend, about 13%, but we are very wary of the data on Sunday. As of Sunday, the growth in reported cases was well below trend. A rebound in the cases reported today seems like a good bet, “suggested Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.

“Case growth continues to slow in mainland Western Europe, although we ignore the data on Sunday for reasons of unreliability. The key point for major European countries is that daily deaths are expected to drop sharply by the end of this week, following the pattern in Italy and Spain, “continued Shepherdson.

“The United Kingdom and the United States are a few weeks behind, mainly due to the incompetence of their governments, so that daily deaths will continue to increase, albeit at a slower rate. We expect the peaks to be around 2K and 3 to 3.5K respectively by mid-late April, “he predicted.

The FTSE 100 increased 102 points (1.9%) to 5,517.

11:15 a.m .: Footsie wakes up again after a mid-morning nap

After a lull in the middle of the morning, the Footsie regained its three-digit gain.

The major stocks index in London rose 115 points (2.1%) to 5,530 as hopes rose that the death rate from coronaviruses would stabilize in continental Europe.

Traders largely took this morning’s Markit / CIPS construction PMI in their stride, although at 39.3 (from 52.6 in February), it was lower than the consensus forecast of 44.0.

“Activity in the construction sector would have dropped at its fastest pace since April 2009, even if the government did not force the closure of the construction sites, provided that the workers respect the rules of social distancing. It seems that staff protests and the layoff plan have convinced many construction companies to put the projects on hold, “said Samuel Tombs, chief economist of the Macroeconomics Pantheon in the UK.

“The housing index (46.6) was much higher than the trade (35.7) and civil engineering (34.4) indices, although companies said they expected housing works are collapsing, mainly due to measures to curb the spread of the virus. For the future, automakers were the most pessimistic about the 12-month demand outlook since October 2008 and, in response, they have downsized the workforce at the fastest rate since September 2010 but if, as we expect, banks largely maintain supply of credit to economy and government follows through on plans for much higher levels of public sector investment, construction sector expected to recover much faster than after 2008/09 recession, where it had taken seven years for production to return to its previous peak. ” The tombs said.

Howard Archer, chief economic adviser to EY ITEM club, said the purchasing managers’ survey had shown that construction activity had relapsed in March, with coronavirus restrictions increasingly affecting activity and closed construction sites.

“Employment in the sector has declined at the fastest rate since September 2010,” said Archer.

“There was intense supply chain pressure in March, as the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in reduced capacity and shortages of supplies from suppliers. The latest extension to supplier delivery times was the fastest since October 2014. Input prices rose at a slower rate, ”he added.

10.05 am: “Car sales are likely to lag behind any recovery in the economy as a whole in the second half of this year”

New passenger car registrations were 40.4% lower than the previous year in March.

Total registrations, including fleet and commercial sales, decreased 44.4% year-over-year in March.

“We estimate that seasonally adjusted passenger car registrations cratered in March to their lowest level since November 2008, after a huge 38% drop month-over-month. It has only been a month since the data began in 2003 – November 2008 – that the registrations have resulted in a larger year-over-year decline, “noted Samuel Tombs, chief economist in the UK at Pantheon Macroeconomics.

“The crisis mainly reflects the impact of car dealership closings due to Covid-19 on the fulfillment of customer orders. The halt to registrations following plant closings in the UK and the rest of Europe, as well as the recent decline in consumer confidence, remains to come. In addition, car sales are likely to lag any economic recovery in the second half of this year, as buyers can easily postpone purchases and need to have confidence in their financial prospects. before committing to such an important purchase. Meanwhile, government likely not to re-run 2008/09 recession scrappage program, which gave people trading in cars over 10 years old £ 2,000 rebate on new purchases car, “predicted Tombs.

“In this recession, the auto industry is not going to be near the top of the list of sectors most in need of support. The government will likely continue to focus its firepower elsewhere this year, “said Tombs.

The car dealer’s actions reacted phlegmatically; Pendragon PLC () was up 0.2% to 6.21p; PLC () is up 2.5% to 432p; () was up 4.1% to 38.5p and PLC () was unchanged.

The FTSE 100 is up 90 points (1.7%) to 5,504.

9:45 am: Construction companies record their lowest level of optimism since October 2008

The IHS Markit / CIPS UK Construction Purchasing Managers ‘index for March plunged to 39.3 from 52.6 in February.

A level below 50 indicates a drop in activity.

This is the most rapid slowdown in construction production in the UK for almost eleven years, as public health emergency measures to halt the spread of coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) have resulted in shutdowns of site work and a drop in new orders, said IHS Markit, the company. who is investigating.

The civil engineering activity index at 34.4 registered the largest decline among the three sub-indices, followed closely by commercial construction (index at 35.7). Residential activity fell at a relatively modest pace in March, the equivalent index posting 46.6; However, construction companies have often commented on an anticipated house construction collapse following site shutdowns amid increasing measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, said IHS Markit.

“March data provide first glimpse of impact on UK construction production of public health emergency measures to end COVID-19 pandemic, activity decreasing to a greater extent since the global financial crisis, “said Tim Moore, chief economic officer, IHS. Note it.

“The closure of construction sites and the foreclosure measures will clearly have an even more serious impact on business activity in the coming months. Survey respondents widely commented on the doubts about the feasibility of continuing existing projects as well as starting new work.

“Construction supply chains should instead focus largely on providing essential activities such as infrastructure maintenance, safety-critical remediation and support for public services in the coming weeks. “, he added.

Duncan Brock, group director at the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS), said that construction sites were closed and that builders had lost their jobs “on a scary scale”.

“New orders have been cut to a net as the extent of the disease has appeared to customers and the foreclosure has seriously hampered any progress.

“With no recovery in sight and with the fastest level of layoffs since September 2010, the sector is stuck in quicksand and continues to sink. While falling commodity prices will relieve those who can source a limited number of materials in the midst of disrupted supply chains, it will be cold comfort with no places to work and staff available while health problems remain . The brutality of this impact cannot be underestimated, and the industry has not yet hit rock bottom, “warned Brock.

The FTSE 100 is up 94 points (1.7%) to 5,510.

9:15 am: lead the way after the divi challenge

Equity investors once again dare to hope that the number of deaths from coronavirus (COVID-19) appears to be stabilizing in Europe.

Only five Footsie titles were in the red as the index rose 163 points (3.0%) to 5,579.

“Spain, Italy and France have reported lower mortality rates in their respective countries,” said Michael Hewson of CMC Markets.

“While this is welcome, none of these countries have shown that they are inclined to lift their blockages anytime soon, despite reports that some countries are considering possible exit strategies. With infection rates still very high, talking about an exit strategy seems rather premature at this stage, especially since the testing processes are still in their infancy and the infection rates are still quite high. “, he added.

The insurance group PLC (), led the hikes with a 16% jump to 185p after confirming on Friday that it will pay the final dividend recommended for 2019.

() has recovered some of its recent losses – the company has been hit hard by the grounding of airline fleets around the world – after a commercial update.

Shares climbed 20% to 301p after declaring that production of new wide-body engines remained broadly stable in the first quarter, as cell customers maintained production levels.

8:35 a.m .: positive start to Easter week

The FTSE 100 got off to a good start as traders were delighted with lower death rates from coronavirus in Italy, Spain and the United States.

The UK blue chip index opened 115 more points to 5,529.29.

WATCH: FTSE 100 starts trading positively despite further drop in oil prices

“The markets take on a more optimistic tone at the start of the week. Some governments are targeting Easter as a time to start rolling back the lockdown restrictions, “said Jasper Lawler, analyst at London Capital Group.

“Investors take this as a harbinger that we are coming out of the other side of the economic deadlock. “

Lawler’s comments certainly sounded with early action.

It was the morning of phoenix stocks with Carnival () leading the death gates brigade with an increase of 13%. A rapid end to the global pandemic could leave cruise lines with some leeway – at least the optimists seem to think so.

Airlines, led by the owner of British Airways (), up 6%, were also in demand.

Aeroengineer owner Melrose (LON: MLRO) also found some support, bouncing 7.3% after the recent sale in the industry.

Prudential (), one of many Footsie financial companies that have actually invested in global markets, also found some support as it rose 6%, supported by an upward movement in the Asian and European markets.

Proactive news headlines:

() is to work on a second clinical trial in Italy aimed at finding ways to fight against people seriously affected by coronavirus (COVID-19). The trial will target the cytokine GM-CSF using a drug currently in the advanced stage for rheumatoid arthritis developed by Oxford-based Izana Bioscience.

() was invited to attend a second meeting with the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to assess his topical treatment for erectile dysfunction MED3000 as a medical device rather than a drug. The company met with the FDA for a pre-bid on February 24 and has now received the official minutes. These confirm that the US regulator has accepted a De Novo medical device request for MED3000 subject to another pre-submission meeting to discuss clinical sufficiency and / or post-marketing requirements once the medical report clinical study or for study FM57 will be available.

CentralNic Group PLC () said it had “no service disruptions” during the coronavirus pandemic and that its current trade is in line with market expectations. The AIM-listed company said its business should “remain resilient” because its services, subscription sales of Internet domain names, were purchased and provided online while the majority of its revenues are payments from subscribers and existing customers on rolling contracts.

() said he remained “well positioned” with a “robust business model”, although he admitted that the coronavirus lockup had “significantly slowed” sales thanks to its network of bricks and mortar, which includes Boots, Superdrug and Tesco. Counterbalancing this, the health and beauty group told investors that its direct-to-consumer sales channel, which accounted for 60% of revenues last year, continued to “work very well.”

(), the strong sales dynamic in the second half of 2019 provided it with solid foundations for 2020. In its 2019 results release, the cybersecurity firm noted that around two-thirds of the orders received in 2019 came from telecommunications services. and cloud providers, markets that are expected to benefit from the transition to home work following the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). The company ended 2019 with a solid balance sheet, with net cash of $ 5.4 million, compared to $ 4.4 million a year earlier.

() has signed a manufacturing contract with the French group of food supplements and nutrition, Laboratoire PYC. The new partner has the exclusive right to manufacture meal replacements for the British company’s GoFigure weight management range. OptiBiotix said the deal helps “reduce risk” in its supply chain. It follows a merger last week with the Fipros of Denmark, which will produce the SlimBiome food additive under license for distribution across the EU.

() has announced that it will work with security reseller and managed security service provider Satisnet Limited to provide third party insurance technology to its customers. As part of this partnership, Satisnet will help customers take control of third-party risks through Crossword’s Rizikon Assurance platform, which they say will help them automate supplier integration and “gain visibility full exposure to third party risks ”.

() has unilaterally declared interest relief on outstanding secured loans during the closure of its stores or until further notice. The pawnbroker company is doing its best to support its customers during what it has described as a “difficult time.” In the meantime, he is making arrangements to be able to accept refunds online and make cash advances through an online portal.

Warwick Brady, CEO of Stobart Group Limited (), highlighted the “significant underlying value” of the group’s aviation and energy assets as the company takes steps to protect its operations during the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). “There are still significant opportunities in the medium and long term to further increase the value of assets for our stakeholders,” said Brady in a statement released on Monday.

() said its online operation has seen encouraging levels of trade in the UK and international markets despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The board of directors said e-commerce sales remain robust for the time being, with strong customer demand since March 24, 2020. It said group sales had increased 19.0% from a year over year in the first three weeks of March before significant recent impact. of the coronavirus crisis.

() said it had exploited a record level of Bitcoin in the first three months of 2020, adding that its operations had not been affected by the coronavirus. The cryptocurrency miner said in a March update that he had mined 918 Bitcoin or Bitcoin equivalent (BTC) in the three months, more than double the amount mined in the previous quarter. For the month itself, Argo mined 333.8 BTC compared to 337.5 in February.

PLC () ahead of budget and analysts’ estimates in the first quarter of 2020 despite severe weather disruption and flooding across the United Kingdom and the Channel Islands, and the start of the pandemic of coronavirus. The building materials company posted sales of £ 26.5 million for the quarter, an 87% year-over-year increase, and unaudited underlying earnings ( EBITDA) of £ 5.25 million, an increase of 144% year over year. The company said it has decided to remain active in all of its operations, where it can ensure compliance with all government welfare guidelines and where there is a clear strategic and financial record in the local market.

Diversified Gas & Oil PLC () believes it can keep its dividend when others lose theirs. In a stock market press release, the North American-based firm informed investors of its operations in the light of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). Designated as a provider of “essential services” in each US state in which it operates, the group said its oil and gas deposits continue to produce with little or no COVID-19 impact.

() announced a further temporary extension of Goudron’s incremental production service (IPSC) contract with Heritage Petroleum, extending the deadline to June 30, 2020. The previous deadline was April 3 and, now, companies have more than time to finalize agreements for longer term extension.

() Hired Project Delivery Specialist, Dr. Chris Haynes, as Advisor to the Board of Directors, to Advance the Greater Buchan Oil Field Development Project (GBA) in the North Sea. Haynes has 39 years of industry experience, much of which was acquired at PLC (), where he was responsible for delivering major Shell upstream projects around the world.

() produced 8,127 tonnes of lead and 4,609 tonnes of zinc from its Hellyer gold mine in Tasmania during the quarter ended March 31, 2020, and the mine was designated “essential” by the government of Tasmania and is still active during the current coronavirus pandemic. . It also produced 1,081 ounces of gold and 230,441 ounces of silver as precious metal credits payable in the lead and zinc concentrate streams.

() halved its losses at December 31, 2019 to just over € 530,000, down from a loss of more than a million euros a year earlier. The company ended the period with 1.4 million euros in cash in the bank, although this figure has dropped slightly since the end of the year. Erris said he was continuing his exploration projects in Ireland, Norway and Scotland.

() aims to restructure the shareholding of its Minto copper mine in the Yukon, Canada. The restructuring comes in the context of financial uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus and in the context of a possible dispute with certain American investors.

() halved its losses at December 31, 2019 to reach just over 530,000 euros, compared to more than 1 million euros a year earlier. The company ended the period with EUR 1.4 million in cash at the bank, although this figure then dropped slightly.

() raised US $ 3 million in new capital and also signed a preliminary development agreement for its flagship Barryroe oil field project. SpotOn Energy – a Norwegian group which “takes a progressive approach to the profitable development of offshore oil and gas deposits” – signed specifications granting it exclusivity until the end of October 2020 to develop new evaluation plans to Barryroe and agree to a binding commercial contract under the proposed exit agreement.

() raised £ 500,000 through a placement of 100 million shares at a price of 0.5p per share. The group said the money raised will be used to support its ongoing activities, particularly in connection with its gold exploration projects in Victoria, Australia. The placement was organized by SI Capital Ltd.

(), a drug discovery and development company, has announced that its president, Tim McCarthy, will offer a live presentation on the recently announced £ 1.5 million stock subscription and update the company’s R&D programs, via the “Investor Meet Company” platform. The live presentation will take place on Tuesday April 7, 2020 at 10:30 am (BST).

(), the AIM listed investor in natural resources opportunities, announced that on April 3, 2020, its CEO, Michael McNeilly, had bought 502,267 common shares of the company on the market, at a price of 1.05p each, for a total consideration of £ 5,273.80. Following these purchases, she added, McNeilly is interested in a total of 6,500,000 common shares, representing 0.43% of the issued share capital of the company.

S&U PLC (), the lender specializing in car financing and real estate bridging, has announced that the publication of the group’s preliminary results for the period ended January 31, 2020 will take place on Wednesday April 8, 2020. It announced that there will have a webinar / conference call to equity analysts at 9:30 am on earnings day hosted by its president, Anthony Coombs; vice-president Graham Coombs; FD group, Chris Redford; and Advantage Finance CEO Graham Wheeler.

7:00 a.m .: Coronavirus fears a setback

The FTSE 100 is expected to open firmly in positive territory, supported by a decline in deaths from coronaviruses.

Italy, Spain, France and the United States all reported a deceleration in the number of deaths over the weekend, although President Trump still warned the Americans of a “very horrible” phase to come up.

The major Asian markets, with the exception of China, which has been closed for a public holiday, went into positive territory on Monday.

“Despite falling death rates, there is no indication that any country is in the mood to report when the respective blockages will be lifted,” said Michael Hewson, analyst at CMC Markets.

Before the Easter holidays, the week should be reasonably busy for company news with Tesco supermarket group () and online fashion chain ASOS () headlining.

Macroeconomic news will be released on Thursday as the National Statistics Office releases figures on GDP, trade and industrial production. As these are overdue indicators, they are unlikely to provide an excellent overview of the damage caused by the coronavirus.

Important events expected on Monday:

Finals: (), ()

Around the markets:

  • Pound was US $ 1.2242, down 0.22%
  • Gold on US $ 5 per ounce at US $ 1,640.70
  • Crude Brent US $ 33.41 per barrel, down 70 cents

City titles:

Financial times

  • Apple agrees to ship 1 ml of medical visors
  • Oil prices slide as Asian markets rise
  • Regulators free up $ 500 billion in capital for lenders to fight the storm of viruses
  • Rolls-Royce to Drop Goals and Suspend Dividend
  • Bailey rejects monetary financing as a tool in the virus crisis


  • Coronavirus locking costs £ 2.4 billion a day
  • Heathrow boss calls for airport control
  • Plan to transform ground jets into intensive care rooms


  • Insurers are unable to meet the demand for pandemic insurance
  • Debenhams does not make pension payments as administration looms


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