Shares in London look set to finish the week with gains, up 1.1% at 6,015, after a solid overnight lead from markets in the US and Asia.

The S&P 500 finished 0.3% higher, Japan's Nikkei 225 was up 1.1% and shares in mainland China advanced 0.4% as US economic data on inflation and manufacturing production came in roughly as expected.

A volatile session in currency markets sees sterling trade around a cent higher against the dollar compared to 24 hours ago at $1.424.

In the UK, campaigning around the EU referendum is suspended for a second day after politician Jo Cox was murdered.

Speeches by leading campaigners as well as an IMF report into the UK economy today have been postponed, according to the BBC, and there are calls for parliament to be recalled.

Retail in focus

In corporate news, retailers top the news agenda in a busy morning for corporate updates.

Supermarkets titan Tesco's (TSCO) refocus on its core groceries business continues, the shares ticking up 1.7p to 154.35p on the £217 million sale of Dobbies Garden Centres to an investor group led by Midlothian Capital Partners and Hattington Capital.

Bury-headquartered retail star JD Sports Fashion (JD.) rises 2.4% to £12.55 on an upbeat AGM trading statement.

Executive chairman Peter Cowgill reports a further boost to sales in recent weeks from the Euro 2016 football tournament, a scenario Shares flagged up in our recent sporting-related feature.

Terry Leahy-chaired discounter B&M European Value Retail (BME) firms 4.8p to 277.6p as it reveals it will host analysts at its Jawoll arm's head office in Germany, in order to give investors an overview of progress since acquiring a majority stake in Jawoll in April 2014.

The chairman of retailer AO World (AO.) and the founder of Café Rouge are bringing a cash shell to the London stock market that will seek to invest in consumer and leisure sector companies. Dorcaster plans to join AIM on 1 July.

Commodity stocks mixed

Oil exploration and production (E&P) outfit Amerisur Resources (AMER) pares earlier losses relating to exploration disappointment in Paraguay to trade up 1.9% to 26.75p on a positive update on its Colombian assets.

Former metals recycling business ZincOx (ZOX:AIM) jumps 40% to 0.88p after raising £300,000 at a significant premium.

It has placed 30 million new shares at 60% above yesterday’s closing price to help fund new opportunities in the resources space.

Metals explorer Kodal Minerals (KOD:AIM) nudges up 6.3% to 0.04p after laying out its growth plans alongside full year results. It is looking for gold in West Africa and copper, zinc and phosphate in Norway.

Other movers

Property debt fund Real Estate Credit Investments (RECI) rises 2% to 155.8p on recommending a 0.8p a share special dividend.

This followed a 7.2% total NAV return in the year to 31 March, the result of the loan portfolio growing to £113 million from £87.1 million in 12 months.

clinical trial suspension sees drug developer Scancell (SCLP:AIM) dive 23% to 14.2p.

Quality control analysis highlighted the batch of cancer vaccine SCIB1 is no longer within the original specification of the trial. The company is making a fresh batch of the drug.

Mobile marketing venture CDialogues (CDOG:AIM) falls 29.2% to 29p as it reveals it has received a notice of termination from partner Numbase in respect of four contracts which account for all of its revenue.

London-focused hotel operator PPHE Hotel (PPH) slips 1% to 805p after entering an agreement to sell its wholly-owned Croatian operating companies to Arenaturist, a Croatian holiday company in which PPHE has a 65.63% shareholding.

The €14.4 million (£11.3 million) deal is expected to take place by 30 June.

Disclosure: An author of this article owns shares in Tesco.


Issue Date: 17 Jun 2016