“The FTSE100 eased back from its record highs in early trading with travel group TUI and low-cost airline easyJet at the foot of the board. Traders are looking to UK construction, industrial and manufacturing production data out mid-morning, with the goods trade balance also due around the same time,” says AJ Bell Investment Director Russ Mould.
“Supermarket giant Sainsbury’s topped the blue-chip board after a record Christmas week, with more than 30 million customer transactions and more than £1bn of sales across the group. This, though, masked a generally flat quarter with like-for-like sales up by 0.1%. But Sainsbury’s decision to takeover Argos has been vindicated with its like-for-like sales up 4%, driven by Black Friday in addition to Christmas trading. Sainsbury’s shares were up by more than 5% in early trading.
“Defence group Cobham was the FTSE250’s biggest faller after it issued another profit warning and cancelled its final dividend payment. Cobham now expects to report a trading profit of £245m, which is below the range it set out in a trading update in October. Cobham’s shares were down by 19.5% in early trading.
“London-focused estate agency Foxtons’ shares slumped after it warned that revenues for last year would be significantly lower than 2015 and that sales volumes could be even lower this year. The group’s 2016 revenues are set to fall to around £133m from £150m in the previous year although revenues from lettings remain more resilient. Foxtons was down by over 9.8%.”
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