Source - SMW
London blue chips and mid caps were making minor gains in early deals, with sterling mildly on the back foot against the dollar and euro, as the market counts down to the UK general election at the back end of this week.

The terror attack at London Bridge over the weekend, which left seven dead and about 50 injured, has knocked sentiment around the UK. Details of the police probe continue to emerge.

Meanwhile, the FTSE 100 was up 5.31 points, or 0.07%, to 7552.94, while the FTSE 250 was up 17.56, or 0.09%, to 20,020.3. Stocks indices in Europe were mixed, after gains in Asia this morning and a positive performance by Wall St on Friday.

In London, BP (BP.), up 0.46% to 464.9p, and Shell (RDSA), up 0.49% to 2097.25p, were doing well alongside gains in the price of crude. Utilities were guided up by National Grid (NG.), ahead 0.56% to 1039p, and SSE (SSE), up 0.37% to 1490.5p.

Also up were several banks after Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), up 0.93% to 260.8p, and Standard Chartered (STAN), up 0.36% to 747.65p. Consumer goods did well as Unilever (ULVR) rose 0.23% to 4382.75p. Supermarkets were mostly lower, but M&S (MKS) rose.

General miners were doing overall poorly thanks to falls in the prices of industrial metals. Antofagasta (ANTO) fell 3.45% to 777.25p, while Anglo American (AAL) faded 2.09% to 1008p. 

Airlines were lower, too. EasyJet (EZJ) dropped 1.69% to 1365.5p, and International Consolidated Airlines (IAG) fell 1.52% to 598.25p. Other sectors notably lower included house builders, commercial property and a good number of insurers.

In the news, Royal Mail (RMG), up 0.71% to 442.2p, said conditional contracts had been exchanged for the sale of two of the seven plots (Plots B and D) on its Nine Elms site to Greystar for £101m in cash. 

Vodafone (VOD), up 0.25% to 230.53p, and LG UPlus have jointly announced a new Partner Market agreement for South Korea, the first strategic partnership by LG Uplus with a global telecommunications company since it was founded in 2010.

AstraZeneca (AZN), down 0.18% to 5354.5p, has presented positive results from its phase III OlympiAD trial that showed a statistically-significant and clinically-meaningful improvement in progression-free survival for patients treated with Lynparza (olaparib) tablets.

BIGGER MOVERS

Toople (TOOP) fell 30.77% to 2.25p after said at the initial closing of its subscription and offer and that it had raised aggregate gross proceeds of £1.41m. Net proceeds of £1.26m would be used for marketing and customer acquisition activities and general working capital.

PowerHouse Energy Group (PHE), up 16.67% to 0.88p, has announced a collaboration agreement with a UK partner involved in the development of energy and waste projects.

Stellar Diamonds (STEL), up 15.91% to 6.38p, has entered into a conditional binding Term Sheet with BDG Capital Ltd in relation to the proposed sale of its assets in the Republic of Guinea for $2m cash.

Dillistone (DSG), down 14.79% to 72p, has warned that its FY results are likely to be be significantly below market forecasts. 

LONDON HIGHLIGHTS

Somero Enterprises (SOM) fell 10.48% to 282p as it remained encouraged by the positive trading environment across its footprint, but noted flat trading in North America. It also planned to distributed $7.5m via a special dividend of $0.133 a share.

LXB Retail Properties (LXB), down 10.61% to 34.75p, said its net asset value per share fell to 33.63p in the six months to the end of March - down from 56.70p at the end of September - after adjusting for the return of capital of 18p per share.

ANGLE (AGL), up 8.41% to 58p, said researchers have presented successful results from their work using the company's Parsortix system in colorectal cancer at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago.  

Plexus Holdings (POS), up 7.12% to 69.63p, has entered into a new four-year contract with Maersk Oil North Sea UK Ltd, for the provision of wellhead, mudline suspension systems and associated services. 

Ocado Group (OCDO), up 5.73% to 334.1p, said that on June 3 it signed an agreement with a regional European retailer to use Ocado Smart Platform (OSP). Bezant (BZT), up 4.44% to 1.18p, said its H1 pretax losses rose to £1.2m, up from £265,000 last time.

San Leon Energy (SLE), up 3.89% to 36.88p, said a sum of €3m in respect of part payment of the second payment due to Avobone N.V. and Avobone Poland B.V. (together, Avobone) was paid on 22 May. The companies had also agreed a revised payment schedule.

ECO Animal Health (EAH), up 2.07% to 617.5p, has received a marketing authorisation from the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency of Malaysia for the use of Aivlosin 625 mg/g water soluble granules in chickens laying eggs for human consumption.

Other stocks in the news included Armadale Capital (ACP) Telford Homes (TEF), Volga Gas (VGAS), Wizz Air (WIZZ), Highland Gold (HGM), Polymetal Int'l (POLY), AFH Financial (AFHP), Transense Technologies (TRT), Time Out (TMO), Highcroft Investments (HCFT), Oncimmune (ONC), Verona Pharma (VRP), Berkeley Energia (BKY), WH Ireland (WHI) and ReNeuron (RENE).