Donald Trump’s move to slap tariffs on Brazil and Argentina stoked fresh concerns over global trade pushing UK stocks down in early trading. The FTSE 100 was off 0.2% to 7,272 while the FTSE 250 gave up 5 points at 20,676.

Plumbing and heating distributor Ferguson (FERG) reported underlying profit up 5% to $433m for the three months to October while also maintaining its full year expectations despite a flat US market. The shares fell 0.2% to £66.43.

A weak box-office performance hit the phasing of major film releases, prompting Cineworld (CINE) to warn that full year trading would be ‘slightly below’ management expectations.

Box office revenues, which account for the bulk of sales, fell 12.8% in the 11 months to 1 December. Retail sales of food and drink for consumption within cinemas, the group's second most significant source of revenue, fell 7.4%.

Meanwhile the integration benefits from the Regal acquisition were greater than anticipated, with synergies running at $190m compared with $150m expected, lifting the shares 3.7% to 213p.

Strong Black Friday trading gave online fashion retailer Boohoo (BOO:AIM) a boost with record sales over the weekend, with the company saying that trading remained strong across its key brands at the half year stage, pushing the shares up 2.9% to 308.1p.

Hungarian based low cost airline Wizz Air (WIZZ) reported that it flew 24% more passengers in November as it added more routes to Georgia, Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine, while the load factor rose to 92.6%. The shares wafted up 0.7% to £39.85.

Gold miner Centamin (CYE) received an all-share merger proposal from Canadian miner Endevour Mining, pushing its shares up 11.3% to 123.5p. The company reported third-quarter gold production down 17% leading to a decline in sales.

Pawnbroker Ramsdens (RFX:AIM) reported a 23% rise in first-half profit, driven by increased jewellery sales and foreign exchange income as revenues rose 30% to £32.5m. The shares jumped 2.2% to 204.5p.

Events business Hyve (HYVE) reported a pre-tax profit of £8.7m compared with a loss of £3.7m on-year as revenue increased 26% to £220.7m for the period ended 30 September.

Forward bookings of £152m were already contracted for 2020, representing 66% of market consensus and up 4% on a like-for-like basis, the company said. The shares were unmoved at 82.6p.

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Issue Date: 03 Dec 2019