UK stocks drifted back slightly on Wednesday afternoon, but managed to close in positive territory on a slightly weaker pound which assisted exporters and hopes of a positive outcome to US-China trade talks. At 1630, the benchmark FTSE 100 index was up 24.38 points, or 0.34%, at 7.167.53. Home improvement company Kingfisher fell 1.19% to 186.45p after it appointed Bernard Bot as its chief financial officer. Bot was most recently CFO of travel technology platform Travelport Worldwide. Gambling group GVC rallied 5.07% to 788p as it lifted its earnings outlook on the back of strong online revenue growth. Auto retailer Vertu Motors rallied 4.15% to 33.9p despite reporting a 7.1% fall in first-half profit, as challenging trading conditions put pressure on car margins. Tube manipulation specialist Tricorn tumbled 37.78% to 11.2p after it warned of a full-year result 'materially below' expectations, amid a UK demand slump and margin pressure owing to the US-China trade war. Industrial and healthcare sector manufacturer Scapa was up 5.1% at 206p despite guiding for a 17% fall in first-half profit, owing to the loss of a key contract with ConvaTec. Specialist engineering group Pressure Technologies jumped 9.23% to 106.5p after subsidiary Chesterfield Special Cylinders secured a contract worth more than £3m to supply nitrogen storage solutions to EDF Energy. Advanced materials group Versarien added 0.36% to 96.85p on signing a collaboration agreement with Spanish industrial furnace manufacturer Refractory Solutions Insertec.
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