Source - SMW
London stocks slipped lower on opening, led by a string of big-ticket miners, supermarkets, utilities and pharmas. The market is looking to a raft of eurozone consumer-price index and unemployment data out today.

Anglo American (AAL) guided the blue-chip pack lower with a fall of 3.14% to 791.8p, traced by Randgold Resources (RRS), off 2.48% to 7177.5p and BHP Billiton (BLT), lower 2.47% to 1014.75p. Oil majors were also down, but well off the miners' pace.

Supermarket chain Morrison (MRW) faded 2.36% to 192.65p, with Sainsbury (SBRY) easing 1.48% to 239.2p and Tesco (TSCO), off 0.89% to 161.85p. Thereafter were several utilities behind Severn Trent (SVT), down 0.9% to 2376.5p, and pharmas after Hikma (HIK), off 0.63% to 2141.5p.

Soon after the open, FTSE 100 was down 8.34 points, or 0.12%, to 6812.45, while FTSE 250 shed 38.1, or 0.21%, to 17,809.1. At 8.35am, WTI crude was down 0.19% to $46.26/bbland Brent was down 0.14% to $48.3/bbl. Gold was lower 0.04% to $1316/oz.

Overall, risers and fallers were roughly evenly split. At the top end of the risers' ladder were a string of financials and property stocks. Banks were led up by Barclays (BARC), ahead 2.15% to 172.78p, and HSBC (HSBA), rising 1.48% to 565.75p. Insurance outfits also gained.

On the property front, it was Berkeley (BKG) providing house builders with foundation behind a 1.45% advance to 2632.5p, while among commercial it was Intu (INTU) leading the pack with a 0.7% gain to 317.1p. Leisure, beverages and high-street retail stocks also accelerated.


Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) was down 24.59% to 3.65p as it launched an open offer for up to 2.3bn new shares at 0.8314p each, to raise up to $25m. The offer was in connection with GKP's balance sheet restructuring transaction.

Taptica (TAP), up 19.92% to 153.5p, has improved its H1 pretax profit to $6.9m, from $1.1m, in what it described as another record period for the company. Revenues were ahead at $51.8m, from $33.9m.

Styles & Wood (STY), up 16.57% to 397.5p, has been appointed as one of four strategic partners by one of the world's largest banking and financial services organisations for the delivery of its UK Capital Plan for over the next five years.


Weatherly International (WTI), up 14.29% to 0.4p, has concluded a further amendment and restatement agreement with Orion Mine Finance (Master) Fund I LP in relation to the facility agreement between Orion and company subsidiary Ongopolo Mining Ltd. 

Carclo (CAR), down 14.01% to 135p, has continued to trade well in the current financial year and the trading performance remained in line with its expectations but warned it may not be able to pay a final dividend because of an increase in its pension deficit.

Surgical Innovations (SUN), up 10.48% to 2.9p, has materially narrowed its H1 pretax loss to £58,000, from a year-earlier shortfall of £1.9m. It added that H2 revenues continued to outperform.

HSS Hire Group (HSS), down 8.82% to 77.5p, said its revenues rose 13.5% to £166.2m in the six months to July 2, driven by key accounts and services revenue (HSS OneCall and Training).

Ncondezi Energy (NCCL), up 7.32% to 5.5p, said Africa Finance Corporation has joined the existing $1.32m loan facility announced in May and committed an additional $3m to the to the shareholder loan facility in two tranches.

TP Group (TPG), up 6.98% to 5.75p, has signed a contract to supply a new variant of its existing carbon dioxide scrubber technology to ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems GmbH, one of the leading system providers of non-nuclear submarines and high-end vessels.  

Xtract Resources (XTR), up 5.56% to 0.05p, has provided an update regarding its Chepica gold and copper mine in Chile. Orogen Gold (ORE), up 4.26% to 0.02p, has issued an update on its interest in the Mutsk gold project in southern Armenia.

888 (888), up 3.32% to 222.13p, has reported record revenues of US$262.0m in H1, up 19% on last time. Pretax profit increased 39% to $27.8m. Interim dividend of 3.8c a share was up from 3.5c last time.

Sound Energy (SOU), dodwn 3.2% to 60.5p, confirms the second Tendrara well, TE-7, has now been drilled to the first casing point at a measured vertical depth (MD) of 462 metres and that the 13-3/8-inch has been successfully set and cemented in the Aalenian dolomite formation.  

Other stocks in the news included Superglass (SPGH), James Fisher and Sons (FSJ), Tlou Energy (TLOU), Hiscox (HSX), Punch Taverns (PUB), Churchill China (CHH), Quantum Pharma (QP.), Brave Bison (BBSN), Arria NLG (NLG), Diploma (DPLM), FairFX (FFX), Inch Kenneth Kajang Rubber (IKK), Tekcapital (TEK), Providence Resources (PVR), Artilium (ARTA) and The Gym Group (GYM).

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