FTSE 100 up slightly as market reacts to half-yearly earnings reports

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The FTSE 100 index opened higher this morning, up by 27 points to 7,043.89, as companies declare their half-yearly interim results.

Property investment and development company SERGO has announced an adjusted pre-tax profit of £168 million for the six months ended 30 June, up 19% compared with the prior year. It opened up by three points to £12.08 per share.

High street banking group Lloyds Banking swung to a profit in the first half of the year and unveiled an interim dividend as better-than-expected macroeconomic performance led to a net impairment credit. It opened up positively this morning before receding back towards its starting position of 46.50p per share.

Transport operator National Express has reported a group operating loss of £26.1m, although performance is ahead of expectations during the period. It opened down almost 6%, at 249p per share.

Asset management company Schroders has increased its profits for the six months ended 30 June by 33% in comparison to the year prior, delivering a profit of £407.5 million. It opened higher by 12 points, climbing to £36.72p per share.

Telecoms group BT reported a decline in first-quarter profit as weaker performance in its enterprise and global business segments weighed on revenue. Its share price fell over 5% this morning, down to 174.4p per share.

Alcoholic drinks maker Diageo reported a rise in annual profit as sales growth was boosted by growth in its off-trade business that offset pandemic-led weakness in on-trade. For the year ended 30 June 2021, pre-tax profit rose to £3.7 from £2.0 billion as sales increased 8.3% to £12.7 billion. Its share price is down slightly over 1%, at £34.69p per share.

Analytics and decision tools provider RELX has reported an increase to its half-yearly operating profit to 30 June, of £860m. Its share price is up by 52 points to £20.86p per share.

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca reported a rise in first-half profit as strong sales in the new medicines and cancer divisions bolstered results. Its share price is down a little over 1% this morning at £81.57p per share.

Software company Sage Group has seen an increase in its recurring revenues of 5% to £1,220m in the nine months ended 30 June. It opened flat at 696p per share.

Defence company BAE Systems lifted its dividend and announced a £500 million share buyback programme after reporting a rise in first-half profit, led by its electronic systems division, which was boosted by an acquisition made last year. It is up 3% this morning, climbing to 577.4p per share.

Food services group Compass reported third quarter organic revenue grew by 36.4% amid strong business wins in the quarter. Its shares rose 3% to £15.43.