London shares end the week on the back foot as investors continue to fret about the future of the Greek economy after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) pulled the technical team that was negotiating with Athens. In early trade on Friday the FTSE 100 index is down around 30 points, or 0.45%, at 6,814, with midcaps and the wider FTSE All Share posting similar declines.
Royal Mail (RMG) continues to yo-yo in the wake of the government’s sale of a 15% stake, though today it is among the leaders rather than the laggards of the FTSE 100. Among the most heavily traded large cap stocks this week, the stock gains 1.8% to 502p with close to £1 million worth of stock changing hands in early trading, but Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) continues its positive run, up 0.46% to 363.15p.
Among bigger movers, electronics minnow Octagonal (OCT:AIM) soars more than 50% to 0.28p as it seals a conditional agreement to acquire the issued share capital of Global Investment Strategy that it does not currently own. It presently holds 9.97%.
Tech minnow Windar Photonics (WPHO:AIM) slumps 10% to 135p as it warns of a material revenue miss from its Asia operations in 2015. Management insists that business elsewhere in the company is trading as expecetd.
Alba Mineral Resources (ALBA:AIM) falls 12% to 0.53p as it raises £355,000 gross via a placing of 71 million new shares at 0.50p each. Net proceeds will be used for existing capital requirements on current projects, new project opportunities and for general working capital.
Online gaming group Bwin.Party (BPTY) tumbles 9% to 95.3p on news its founding shareholders James DeLeon and Ruth DeLeon - via the trusts Emerald Bay and Stinson Ridge - are placing up to 50 million shares in the company. The couple, who are divorcing, agreed at the end of 2013 to sell their stakes if the group was successful in winning a license in New Jersey, which it did in April 2015.
Back in the resources space, Forte Energy (FTE:AIM) jumps 25% to 0.1p as it says the application by its Slovak operating entity for a new exploration licence to cover the Kuriskova uranium deposit area is still being processed by authorities.
Colombian oil producer Amerisur Resources (AMER:AIM) gushes up 9.5% to 36.1p on news of a deal to hook its Platanillo field to an Ecuadorian pipeline. Civil works are set to commence soon and a pipeline to the border should be in operation by the fourth quarter of 2015.
Elsewhere, quirky British lifestyle fashion brand Ted Baker (TED) ticks 1.6% (45p) higher to £28.60 on yet another superb trading statement. The running Shares Play of the Week flags a strong start to the year, delivering rapid retail, online and wholesale growth over the 18 weeks to 6 June.
Avocet Mining (AVM:AIM) rallies 5.5% to 4.88p on positive drilling results from its campaign at Souma, Burkina Faso. These are the first results from an ongoing drilling and metallurgical test work programme that began in April.
Technology and life sciences recruiter SThree (STHR) gains 1.2% to 381p on a half-year trading update showing net fee income is well ahead of the same period last year, up 14%. Growth slowed a little in the second quarter, gaining 12% versus 17% in the first. That’s mainly the result of an 18% decline in its relatively small Energy division.