London's blue chip stocks add another 1.3% to a near-6% rally week-to-date as votes are cast in Britain's referendum on EU membership.

Sterling trades at its highest level against the dollar in 2016, buying $1.4819.

Real-money prediction markets as well as polling analysis provided by Bloomberg's Brexit Tracker put the odds of a vote to leave at little over 25% after a big swing in favour of 'Remain' over the last week.

Commodities trader Glencore (GLEN) leads the FTSE 100 gainers, up 4.0% to 155p and miners including Anglo American (AAL), Rio Tinto (RIO) and BHP Billiton (BHP) are also among the bigger gainers.

In corporate news, supermarkets giant Tesco (TSCO) takes on 2.68p (1.6%) at 169.13p on the delivery of a second quarter of positive like-for-like sales growth across all parts of the group.

CEO Dave Lewis' bold turnaround strategy is bearing fruit in tough market conditions, UK and international like-for-like sales up 0.3% and 3% respectively in the first quarter to 28 May.

Tesco Linwood

Following on from the sales of Dobbies Garden Centres, the Giraffe restaurant chain and Turkish business Kipa, Tesco today flags the proposed disposal of Harris & Hoole to Caffe Nero, further sharpening the focus on the core UK business and reducing debt.

Among the bigger movers, oil junior Clontarf Energy (CLON:AIM) soars more than 150% to 0.78p as Ghana's Ministry of Petroleum gives the thumbs-up to start negotiations over the Lukoil B offshore block. Clontarf plans to follow up with more detailed discussions down the line.

Electronics components manufacturer Stadium (SDM:AIM) collapses 28% to 80p after warning on profits following the loss of a major telematics customer. 'Frustratingly the establishment of our new regional design centres didn't happen quickly enough for this particular customer,' explains CEO Charlie Peppiatt today.


Packaging company DS Smith (SMDS) gains 4% to 402.8p on a 12% rise in adjusted profit before tax to £332 million in the 12 months to 30 April, with revenue up 6% to £4 billion, driven by organic growth and five acquisitions.

Corrugated box volumes are up 3.1% with particularly good growth from acquired businesses in Western and Central Europe.

Specialist carpets seller United Carpets (UCG:AIM) edges 1.1% higher to 11.5p as operations director Paul Newton, the man responsible for running its retail stores, steps up to the board as an Executive Director.

Disclosure: A contributor to this article owns shares in Tesco

Issue Date: 23 Jun 2016