Construction equipment hire group Ashtead (AHT) continues its impressive run of results that beat market expectations. Third quarter figures smash forecasts and prompt analysts to upgrade their numbers once again, sending the share price up 6.2% to 898.5p. The business is now worth £4.5 billion, reflecting more than a 26-fold increase in its valuation since February 2009.
Specialist valve engineer Rotork (ROR) gains 4.4% to £27.58 as results reveal record order intake and it announces the £64 million acquisition of South Korea's Young Tech. We take a closer look at the numbers here.
Diversified miner-to-commodities trader Glencore Xstrata (GLEN) rises 2.5% to 334.35p after the drop in full-year earnings wasn't as bad as feared. It is a similar story to its peers – earnings have been propped up by higher production rates and cost savings, offsetting lower selling prices. The key catalyst for the share price will be offloading the La Bambas copper mine in Peru. The asset is still up for sale, as dictated by the Chinese regulators as a condition of letting Glencore merge with Xstrata last year. China Minmetals is the sole bidder left in the process.
Moneysupermarket (MONY) jumps 3.3% to 185.98p as full-year results reassure investors that the business is coping well despite recent volatility from search engine marketing. Google changed its natural search algorithms last summer which saw Moneysupermarket get pushed down the rankings when you look for certain money-related terms.
FTSE 100 oil explorer Tullow Oil (TLW) gushes up 2.2% to 805.5p as heavyweight peer Marathon Oil (MRO:NYSE) finalises a deal to enter acreage in Ethiopia where Tullow itself has a 50% stake in the South Omo block. Numis comments: 'A positive to see appetite to enter Ethiopia from larger E&Ps such as Marathon and with the government's blessing.'
There's good and bad news in John Menzies' (MNZS) full-year results, leaving the shares drifting down 5.4% to 624.71p. The aviation arm is going from strength to strength but Menzies has suffered from foreign exchange headwinds and weakness in its magazines-to-newspapers distribution arm.
After seeing its share price obliterated by a major profit warning last year, sports media group Perform (PER) bounces back 6.9% to 248.6p with its full-year results. A turnaround plan is being actioned.
Aerospace and defence engineer Meggitt (MGGT) gains 2.8% to 508.5p as it posts a 3% year-on-year increase in 2013 underlying pre-tax profit £377.8 million and hikes its dividend 8% to 12.75p in a sign of its confidence in 2014 prospects. The results are slightly ahead of revised guidance given last November when it warned revenues would grow in the low single digits this year, down from its August prediction of mid-single digit gains.
Branded grocery business Premier Foods (PFD) falls 2.6% to 136.38p as it confirms a much-speculated financial restructuring, including a discounted £353 million placing and rights issue and new pensions agreement, to reduce debt and strengthen the balance sheet. The news overshadows the Mr. Kipling-to-Bisto brand owner's full-year figures, which show a better-than-expected 61% rise in the more generous adjusted taxable profits measure to £86.8 million.
Sausage skins maker Devro (DVO) slumps 9.2% to 277.1p as a weak outlook statement triggers earnings downgrades. Full-year results are in line with expectations and include plans to invest £50 million on a manufacturing plant in China, the world's biggest collagen casings market. Investors focus on poor volume visibility in developed markets and a warning currency headwinds will hit 2014 figures.
Insurer Direct Line (DLG) rises 1.1% to 264.2p as it names Mike Holliday-Williams as head of its personal lines business. The new managing director joins from RSA (RSA) replacing Tom Woolgrove after four years.