“The FTSE100 opened on the front foot after Wall Street closed lower on Friday and Asia was mixed last night, with traders looking ahead to OPEC's meeting in Vienna at the end of the month,” says AJ Bell Investment Director Russ Mould.
“Plastic and fibre products group Essentra propped up the FTSE250 board in early trading after cutting its adjusted operating profits forecasts for a second time this year. Essentra has been hit by the prolonged underlying softness in the Chinese market while the ramp-up in new contracts in its filtration products business has been slower than expected. The group now anticipates full-year adjusted operating profits of £137m-£142m, revised down from £155m-£165m. Essentra’s shares were down by more than 19% in early trading.
“Outsourcing group Mitie’s shares slumped after it swung into the red in the first half. Mitie took a £117.2m hit following its decision to quit the homecare market. The group has seen sustained downward pressure on homecare charge rates and reductions in the volumes of care being commissioned which has resulted in increasing losses. Mitie’s shares were down by more than 16.7%.
“Castings and engineering group Chamberlin’s first half trading is on track but, as in previous years, its full-year results will be weighted towards the second half. As net exporters of manufactured products, all Chamberlin's operations should benefit from sterling’s weakness with the financial impact more evident in the next financial year as the company's pre-Brexit currency hedges unwind.”
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