London investors start Tuesday largely sitting on their hands with a raft of US technology majors set tp report results after the close of trading, while traders also remain wary ahead of the release of tomorrow’s MPC minutes and a barrage of economic data scheduled for release at the end of the week.
US tech giants Apple (AAPL:NDQ), Microsoft (MSFT:NDQ) and Yahoo (YHOO:NDQ) are all set to post earnings reports after close of trading in New York later on Tuesday.
The blue-chip FTSE 100 index barely budges, easing less than 10 points to 6,780, with similar modest reverses posted by the FTSE 250 midcaps and the wider FTSE All-Share indexes. Miners dominate the top of today's Footsie leader board, led by Fresnillo's (FRES) 2.2% gain to 643p, with some investors seeing value in the gold mining space after yesterday's hefty sector reverses.
Online electricals retailer AO World (AO.) rallies strongly, more than 8% higher at 129.6p, as it confirms that trading is on track with its long-term strategic progress. 'We continue to expect the business model to deliver as expected for the full year,' the company says, easing someof the concerns investors have held over the firm's business model.
But chains maker Renold (RNO) slides more than 6% to 81.38p despite management's attempts to reassure over the firm's full year adjusted operating profit outlook. The market is clearly less convinced about the state of the company's end markets.
Betting group IG (IGG) also slumps more than 6%, to 772.25p, with full year results hit by the Swiss National Bank's decision to cease intervention in the franc exchange rate. The spread-betting and contracts-for-difference company is also set to lose its CEO of nine years, with Tim Howkins set to retire.
Among the bigger movers, set-top box and IPTV technology designer Amino Technologies (AMO:AIM) jumps nearly 7% as it unveils the £46.7 million acquisition of US-based hybrid broadcast specialist Entone. The Cambridge-based company will also seek to raise £21 million to help fund this substantial deal by way of an accelerated book build, news that accompany's solid interim figures.
Cloud computing company Nasstar (NASA:AIM) crashes 15% to 7.13p as it warns on full year revenues and profits. A series of challenges are set to hit the business in the second half, while a key client is consolidated its IT services in the second half and the group is set to lose licensing revenue from another.
Elsewhere, international food and drinks concessions operator SSP (SSPG) slips 0.9% to 304p on a 0.1% drop in revenue between 1 April and 30 June, driven by the strengthening of the pound against major European currencies. Revenue on a constant currency basis is up 4.1% with like-for-like sales growth of 3.2%.
Private bank Arbuthnot (ARBB:AIM) improves 5.7% to £14.51 on underlying pre-tax profits growing 30% to £17.1 million in the six months to the end of June. Higher lending, deposits and assets under management are behind the rise. Its retail division Secure Trust Bank (STB:AIM) is 0.8% higher at £29.08 on a 14% jump in underlying pre-tax profits to £17.4 million.
Online gambling group GVC (GVC:AIM) rises 2.7% to 420.5p after confirming it is looking at options to trump 888's (888) bid for Bwin.Party (BPTY), which was accepted on Friday. It's been rumoured that GVC could make its 110p offer per share without its partner Amaya Gaming (AYA:TSX) in order to avoid a break up of Bwin.