FTSE puffs higher ahead of Brexit votes

Writer, Stock Market Wire
Tuesday, January 29, 2019 - 11:58

As MPs prepare to vote on a series of amendments which could impact the course of Brexit the FTSE 100 was busy rallying, up 1.7% to 6,832.72 by midday.

Index heavyweights British American Tobacco and Imperial Brands were among the top risers.

LARGE AND MID CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Domino's Pizza sagged 9% to 249.3p on guiding for annual pre-tax profit at the lower end of expectations owing to weaker sales in Norway and Iceland.

Consumer goods group PZ Cussons reversed 10.9% to 186.8p as 'extremely challenging conditions' in Nigeria drove a 20% fall in first-half profit and a full-year guidance downgrade.

Royal Mail slumped 10.3% to 269.7p after it downgraded its letter volume guidance, blaming the impact of new European privacy regulations and 'business uncertainty'.

Rising market volatility hurt wealth manager Hargreaves Lansdown, sending its assets under administration south in the first half and sparking a 4.9% fall in its shares to £17.09.

Housebuilder Crest Nicholson was having a better morning, gaining 6.8% to 364.8p as a fall in annual profit at least met its recently-downgraded guidance.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Healthcare services provider UDG Healthcare rallied 8.1% to 603.5p with an upbeat forecast for annual earnings per share to rise by up to 6% following a 'good' start to the year.

Cosmetics group Warpaint London dropped 11% to 76p as its forecast for a rise in annual revenue and adjusted profit nevertheless failed to meet investor expectations.

Business software provider Sopheon fell 6.7% despite guiding for profits significantly ahead of upgraded market expectations after it won new customers.

Marketing group SpaceandPeople dropped 11.8% to 15p on a warning that it now expected to post a full-year loss amid tough conditions on the high street.

Consumer healthcare company Venture Life gained 6.2% to 48.9p after it guided for annual adjusted earnings 'at least' in line with market expectations, as its revenue jumped.