London shares advance in early trade on Tuesday as traders sift through a batch of company results and trading updates and largely react positively. The FTSE 100 index rises around 30 points, or 0.4%, to 6,287, led higher by bank Standard Chartered (STAN), up nearly 7% at 556.7p, following its quarterly trading update to 31 March.
BP (BP.) also rallies despite posting a pre-tax loss of $865 million in the first quarter, compared to a $2.2 billion profit in the first quarter of 2015, as it kept its dividend unchanged at $0.10. The shares rally more than 3.5% to 371p.
British American Tobacco (BATS) edges 0.5% up to £41.85 as it reports a 7.5% increase in revenue at constant currency in the first quarter as cigarette volumes from its subsidiaries rose 3.6% to 158 billion.
Premier Inn and Costa owner Whitbread (WTB) gains 3% to £39.84 on a 5% rise in pre-tax profit to £487.7 million in the year to 3 March, with group revenue 12% higher at £2.9 billion. Like-for-like sales are up 4.2% at Premier Inn and 2.9% at Costa. The group has identified three themes to develop the business: grow and innovate the core UK businesses; expand internationally, in particular Premier Inn in Germany; and boost its IT infrastructure and digital capabilities.
Going the other way, Cobham (COB) slumps nearly 20% to 173.6p after the aerospace and defence group proposed a £500 million rights issue in the second quarter of the year as it reported a big drop in first-quarter trading profit.
Failing mobile habitats play Snoozebox (ZZZ:AIM) slumps again, down 65% to 0.39p, as it reveals that it expects to report a full year adjusted EBITDA loss before non-recurring items of about £5.5 million and net debt of about £5.4 million. This comes just a day after the CEO walked out, which you can read about here.
Telematics black box maker Trakm8 (TRAK:AIM) shoots 8% higher to 295p as it reveals significant growth in revenues and profits compared to the prior year. Growth in group profitability is in line with expectations and driven by year on year revenue growth of 44% and a small improvement in gross margins.
Scottish free-to-air broadcaster and running Play of the Week STV (STVG) is up 2.7% to 398p as it reports first quarter trading in line with expectations with a strong contribution from its production business, robust regional advertising revenues and digital growth outweighing guidance for flat national ad revenues.
Music and audio products supplier Focusrite (TUNE:AIM) falls 2.3% to 171p on a 31% drop in pre-tax profit to £2.4 million in the six months to 29 February, driven by a change in the fair value of foreign exchange contracts. Revenue is up 8.7% to £25.9 million with particularly strong growth in Asia and Australia, up 29.6%. The interim dividend has been lifted by 8.5% to 0.65p.
Wealth manager St James’s Place (STJ) moves 1% higher to 925.5p on net inflows remaining flat at £1.3 billion in the first three months of 2016, compared to the same period a year ago. Funds under management increased 11.1% to £62 billion during the period.