Better-than-expected real estate prices sends housebuilders into orbit in early deals in London. A 9% rise in UK house prices, which includes a 13% gain in London, sees home construction blue chips Taylor Wimpey (TW.), up 6.1% to 196p, Berkeley (BKG), up 4.3% to £31.14, and Barratt Developments (BDEV), up 2.8% to 553p, among the biggest FTSE 100 gainers.
Solid industrial output numbers in Japan as well as more gains for commodity prices means commodity producers and other cyclicals feature in a rally which sees London's large cap index gain 0.9% to 6,207.
US equipment hire outfit Ashtead (AHT) is one of the big beneficiaries, gaining 4.7% to 918p. Miners Anglo American (AAL), up 3.7% to 632p, Glencore (GLEN), 3.3% higher at 138p and BHP Billiton (BLT), up 2.8% at 864p make up the rest of the leading pack.
Markets are also digesting a number of corporate updates as March year-end companies begin to update on results.
Vodafone (VOD) shares gain 2.5% at 229.2p after the company’s organic sales returned to growth for the first time since 2008, beating expectations in the full year. This after a strong performance in the fourth quarter, hiking the final dividend 2%.
Energy distribution specialist DCC (DCC) gains 3.2% to £63.45 on financial results for the year to 31 March 2016 as the benefits of £390 million of acquisition spend flows through. Underlying operating profit increased 35.5% to £300.5 million driven by contributions from acquired business and in the face of warm winter weather which weighed on energy volumes.
Investors in the small cap media sector are counting the cost of a number of profit warnings. TV producer Ten Alps (TAL:AIM) is down 32.5% to 1.35p warns profits will be 'materially below expectations' thanks to delayed commissions.
Ad tech play Crossrider (CROS:AIM) falls 27% to 27p as it points to a rapid deterioration in its markets. There is a more positive reaction to Haynes Publishing (HYNS:AIM) as its warning of full year profits 30% below expectations is accompanied by a management shake up and news of cost cutting initiatives. The shares are up 1% to 115.2p.
Housing maintenance contractor Lakehouse (LAKE) warns on profits after saying challenges in its regeneration division mean it is revising down its full year expectations following a difficult first half in which it was hit by headwinds across its businesses combined with internal disruption. Shares in Lakehouse slump 40% at 28.64p.
But there's a more upbeat response to love/hate video search business Blinkx (BLNX:AIM), which says it enters its new financial year in a strong, competitive position with a product portfolio that is well aligned with industry growth trends. That sparks a near-24% jump in the shares to 20.75p despite posting a widened pre-tax loss for the full year to 31 March, hit by one-off costs and a fall in revenue.
Pub group Enterprise Inns (ETI) gains 3% to 92.5p on a 1.8% rise in like-for-like net income in its leased and tenanted estate in the six months to 31 March, compared with 0.8% growth the previous year. Unplanned business failures are down 9%, while pre-tax profit is flat at £57 million as interest savings from reduced debt offsets a disposal-led £2 million reduction in EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation).