FTSE stocks stole lower in early deals in the wake of a higher Wall St overnight and a mostly lower Asia this morning. Financials were notably lower on the index of top-100 stocks, as were house builders and utilities. Soon after the open, FTSE 100 was down 1.48 points, or 0.02%, to 6824.57. FTSE 250 was lower 40.94, or 0.23%, to 17,962.5. At 8.33am, WTI crude was up 1.12% to $43.33/bbl, while Brent was up 1.16% to $47.81/bbl. Gold was flat at $1354/oz. Worldpay (WPG) was down 3.74% to 283.4p after Ship Global 2 sold a total of 350m shares at 282p each, raising about £987m, reducing its stake to about 10.7%. Following was Provident Financial (PFG), lower 1.46% to 2944.5p. Banks traced Barclays (BARC), down 1.37% to 500.5p, while utilities were guided south by Severn Trent (SVT), lower 1.43% to 2413p. Also lower were several pharmas, a number of insurers and a posse of consumer goods, high-street retail and commercial property. Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.), down 1.74% to 1326.5p, grew revenue, profit, assets under administration and active client numbers to new record levels in the year to the end of June. It added that CEO Ian Gorham would step down no later than end-September. House builders softened in the wake of Barratt Developments (BDEV), down 0.39% to 505p, which reported a record pretax profit of £682.3m, up 20.7% on the year. Blue-chip risers and fallers were roughly evenly split. Ashtead (AHT), up 5.52% to 1327.5p, led the winners after it said its Q1 underlying pretax profits rose 4% to £183.6m. Underlying rental revenues were up 12% at £660.8m and EBITDA rose by 9% to £340.0m. A number of miners were gaining behind Randgold Resources (RRS), up 2.37% to 7790p, with Fresnillo (FRES) ahead 1.51% to 1719.5p. Oil majors were up, too. Shell (RDSA) rose 1.36% to 1887.25p, while BP (BP.) gained 1.04% to 432.1p. Meantime, supermarkets firmed. BIGGER MOVERS Origo Partners' (OPP) shares have been restored to trading and were up 672.73% to 2.12p, the company sending out a circular with a proposed share-capital restructuring. The Proposals, if approved, would also serve to settle the ongoing disputes with Brooks Macdonald. Futura Medical (FUM) , up 78.07% to 50.75p, has posted headline results from its efficacy study of MED2002, a gel to treat erectile dysfunction. Results showed MED2002 achieved its primary endpoint and successfully demonstrated efficacy, safety and speed of onset. Zoltav (ZOL), up 26.67% to 28.5p, said directors now expected a FY pretax profit materially ahead of market expectations. LONDON HIGHLIGHTS Tethyan Resources (TETH), down 24% to 2.38p, has issued drilling results from the six drill holes on the polymetallic Cadinje project in Western Serbia. Overall the drilling went well and over 90 % recoveries were achieved with the use of Triple Tube. Windar Photonics (WPHO) has confirmed new orders for Windar's 4-beam LiDAR device, the WindVISION, from international wind turbine OEMs. Its shares rose 16.94% to 72.5p. Starcom (STAR), down 15.63% to 3.38p, has narrowed its H1 pretax loss to $0.56m, from a year-ago loss of $0.69m. Revenue was $2.5m, from $2.6m. Shanta Gold (SHG), up 17.57% to 10.88p, has unveiled an upgraded JORC Code compliant (2012) resource estimate at the Ilunga satellite deposit at the New Luika Gold Mine (NLGM) located in the Lupa Goldfields, southwest Tanzania. Trakm8 (TRAK), down 15.38% to 192.5p, said trading in the first five months of the current financial year, which began April 1, has started satisfactorily and is consistent with its expectations for the year as a whole. Sports Direct International (SPD), down 7.75% to 322.5p, said it sees underlying FY 2017 EBITDA coming in at about £300m, and separately that it had rebuffed a offer to step down by its chairman, Keith Hellawell. Savannah Resources (SAV), up 5.71% to 4.63p, said reconnaissance rockchip sampling over its new lithium projects in Finland, Somero and Erajarvi, has returned anomalous lithium results. CentralNic (CNIC), up 3.26% to 44.5p, has reported an adjusted pretax profits of £948,000 for H1, up 12% on last time. Other stocks in the news included CLS (CLI), Hydrogen (HYDG), EU Supply (EUSP), Ultra Electronics (ULE), Marlowe (MRL), Aminex (AEX), Green & Smart (GSH), Revolymer (REVO), Empiric Student (ESP), RedT Energy (REDT), Regency Mines (RGM), Amphion (AMP) and Joules (JOUL).
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