The FTSE 100 is up 23 points to 7,362.93 as tech heavy indices in the US and Asia weakened amid news of falling demand for smart phones.
Cillit Bang maker Reckitt Benckiser (RB.) falls 4.8% to £55.28 after missing its first quarter growth estimates. To March 31, the company says that its Hygiene Home division which accounts for 38% of revenue was impacted by a difficult competitive market and growth was at the lower end of expectations.
Pharmaceutical company Shire (SHP) has been the subject of various take-over rumours recently. Its share price is down 3.6% to £33.34 on announcing that Irish-headquartered pharma company Allergan is not intending to make an offer for the UK-based company.
Another pharma play Indivior (INDV) is up 2.1% to 439.5p on news that it has submitted a new opioid abuse treatment drug to Health Canada. The drug, Sublocade, if approved by Canadian health officials will be marketed by Indivior’s Canadian subsidiary.
There’s more pharma sector woes as Vectura (VEC) sheds 1.3% to 103.2p after saying its chief financial officer Andrew Derodra has left the company. He is leaving to take up the same role at Unilabs, a private equity owned medical diagnostics company.
Barclays (BARC) share price nudges up slightly by 0.4% to 214.9p as banking regulators conclude their investigation of chief executive Jes Staley and will not take enforcement action.
Royal Mail (RMG) gains 0.46% to 565.6p after confirming that CEO Moya Greene will retire in September but a successor Rico Back is already waiting in the wings.
Currency manager Record (REC) drops 10.7% to 43.9p after fourth quarter results show a drop in assets. To 31 March the company’s assets under management equivalents are now $62.2bnas clients take $1.6bn out of the company’s strategies.
AIM-listed drinks company Distil (DIS:AIM) fizzes up 13.6% to 2.5p as a major UK pub chain is going to sell its RedLeg Spiced Rum drink in its premises. The company also reports that it has enjoyed strong sales growth in its fourth quarter to 31 March as revenues grow by 28%.