Financial stocks drag FTSE lower

The FTSE 100 was 0.2% lower at 6,801 as financial stocks pulled the blue-chip index down.

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) fell 5.4% and Standard Chartered (STAN) retreated 4.6%, while Aviva (AV.) and Standard Life (SL.) slid into negative territory.

US presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton was viewed at the winner against opponent Donald Trump in the first campaign debate yesterday.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil slipped 1.4% lower to $45.26 and Brent crude oil slid 1.5% to $46.62 per barrel, respectively.

Gold was flat at $1,339 per ounce and copper retreated 0.2% to $4,828 per tonne.


Plumbing products specialist Wolseley (WOS) declined 6.2% to £41.11 after warning about ‘uncertainty in the economic outlook’ in its prelims. It announced 800 job cuts in its UK business as part of an overhaul to increase its competitiveness.

Travel agent Thomas Cook (TCG) failed to take off as a pre-close update revealed earnings will hit forecasts. The company predicted strong demand for most of its destinations apart from Turkey. Shares in the company slumped 6.4% to 68.3p.


Budget greetings cards provider Card Factory (CARD) was stable at 309.4p on interims demonstrating further sales and profit growth despite softer high street footfall. Investors raised a glass to the announcement that the retailer will return £51.1 million to shareholders via a special dividend, on top of a hike in the dividend to 2.8p.

Merchant bank Close Brothers (CBG) was in the red as investors focused on warnings of ‘more challenging conditions’ instead of a 4% increase in full year pre-tax profit.


Online fashion retailer (BOO) lifted its sales guidance for the third time in three months. Boohoo said it expects revenue growth for the full year of 30-35%, but investors were lukewarm over a modest decline in margins.

Digital audio channels outfit Immedia (IME) climbed 38.7% to 43p after confirming a three year contract with a major UK retailer. It said more information about the contract will be announced when client confidentiality is lifted.

Mobile app distributor Cellcast (CLTV) fell 14.8% as pre-tax profit declined three-fold from £256,000 to £78,000 as demand in the core interactive broadcast sector continued to decline.

Communications service provider Alternative Networks (AN.) disappointed investors on expectations of lower adjusted EBITDA for the year to 30 September, after new business performance declined following the Brexit vote.

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