UK stocks are trading slightly better on Friday morning with the FTSE 100 index up 0.3% at 6,837 points led by banks, miners and energy stocks.

The only notable area of weakness is property stocks with British Land (BLND), Land Securities (LAND) and Segro (SGRO) holding the market back after a series of downgrades from investment bank Citi.

Index heavyweight Vodafone (VOD) treads water at 143p after its third quarter trading update shows growth in its key metric slowing.

Organic service revenues were up just 0.1% in the three months to the end of December against an increase of 0.5% in the previous quarter.

The firm reiterates its full year target for underlying growth in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda).

We take an in-depth look at Vodafone in this week’s edition of Shares magazine.

Shares in brewing and pub group Fuller, Smith & Turner (FSTA) jump as much as 23% to £11.22 in frenzied early trading after the firm announces it is selling its beer business to the Japanese Asahi Group.

Trading in Fuller’s shares has been lively to say the least since the start of the year with the price regularly moving up or down by 5% or more intraday which suggests that news was expected.

Irn Bru-maker AG Barr (BAG) sheds 1% to 790p after reporting a 5% increase in sales in the second half of the financial year ending this month.

Volumes were up 5% against 3% for the UK market while pricing was up by 8% as the soft drinks levy kicked in.

Shares in women’s clothing retailer Bonmarche (BON) gain 4% to 38.5p after the company reassures on current trading and in particular progress in clearing discounted stock.

Meanwhile shares in online value retailer Findel (FDL) climb 5% to 211p after the firm reports third quarter revenues up 11% with record-breaking sales up to and including Black Friday.

Silicon wafer producer IQE (IQE), which warned on earnings in November on signs of weak iPhone sales, predicts flat revenues for the full year as well as a charge to shut its New Jersey plant.

After what the chief executive called a ‘very disappointing’ 2018 characterised by substantial de-stocking by clients and disruption in its own supply chain, the firm is looking forward to delivering a ‘strong performance’ this year.

The shares take the news in their stride, trading sideways at 74p.

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Issue Date: 25 Jan 2019