FTSE 100 closes lower as Russian sanctions and Fed minutes weigh on sentiment

The FTSE 100 closed down 0.47% on Thursday as investors reflected on the latest round of sanctions against Russia, as well as minutes from the US Federal Reserve that outlined plans to scale back asset purchases and hinted at rate hikes. The combination helped “throw cold water on investor sentiment,” AJ Mold said. Insurer Aviva PLC was the day’s biggest loser, closing down 4.9%, while Barratt Developments PLC also fell 4.3%.

Companies News: 

Tate & Lyle to return £500m to shareholders via special dividend

Tate & Lyle PLC on Thursday announced plans to return 500 million pounds ($653.4 million) to shareholders by declaring a special dividend to be paid in May.

De La Rue sees FY2022 adjusted operating profit in line with market views

De La Rue PLC said on Thursday it expects to end its 2022 financial year with adjusted operating profit in line with expectations.

Entain starts the year in line with expectations; Increase in net income from group games

Entain PLC said on Thursday it had started the year well and was performing in line with expectations as the business benefited from the return of retail after Covid-19-related store closures last year.

Robert Walters Increase in Q1 net fee income; Driven by performance in Asia-Pacific, Europe

Robert Walters PLC said on Thursday that its net commission income increased in the first quarter of the year as recruitment activity levels continued to rise.

Shell warns of up to $5 billion hit by Russia exit

Shell PLC said on Thursday it expects to book accounting charges of up to $5 billion in the first quarter related to its decision to exit its joint ventures with Russian energy giant Gazprom PJSC following the invasion of the Ukraine by Russia.

Ashtead Technology says confident in 2022 sights after strong Q1

Ashtead Technology Holdings PLC said on Thursday it delivered a strong performance in the first quarter of 2022, bolstering the board’s confidence in delivering on its full-year expectations.

Market Talk: 

Oil and gas companies look set to ride the wave of higher prices

12:33 GMT – Oil and gas companies appear poised to profit from higher oil prices, although Energean may not benefit as much as others, Jefferies said. The brokerage raises the company’s stock price targets by an average of 33%, with buy ratings on 10 of 14 names, after applying its higher oil and gas price and postponing l net assets as of January 1, 2023, he said. “We expect the current energy crisis to have long-term effects on gas markets, as European efforts to replace Russian volumes and delays in Russian LNG projects are expected to prolong market tightness until in 2030,” Jefferies said. Still, that cuts Energean for not buying due to the company’s exposure to fixed gas prices.

Countryside Partnerships outlook unclear

1214 GMT – Countryside Partnerships update highlights a number of issues within the business, including challenges in executing a high growth strategy and poor performance from the Westleigh acquisition , said Peel Hunt. The homebuilder’s new profit forecast for financial year 2022 of an adjusted operating profit of £150m is better than the brokerage had expected. However, the lack of visibility over the years to come is not helpful and the lack of clarity on the likely cost of remediating the pavement could further muddy the waters, says Peel Hunt. Countryside shares are still priced somewhat inflated and risk appears biased to the downside, Peel Hunt said, reiterating his holding rating and 330p price target on the share. The shares are down 12% at 244.0 pence.

UK energy plan dooms thousands of people to living in the cold, says E.ON

1206 GMT – E.ON, one of the UK’s biggest energy suppliers, has criticized the UK government’s new energy security plan for a lack of action on energy efficiency. “By giving up any further commitment to help people improve their homes, [Thursday’s] condemns thousands more customers to living in cold, drafty homes, wasting energy and paying more than necessary for their heating,” says Michael Lewis, CEO of E.ON UK. Energy bills could still rise sharply before winter, and there’s little in the news that will provide a solution this decade, let alone this year, says Lewis.E.ON is a German energy group that supplies about 3 .8 million customers in the UK

Money markets UK rate pricing signals recession risk

11:45 GMT – Money markets are pricing in a much steeper rise in UK interest rates this year than Berenberg predicted. “We expect the bank rate to reach 2.25% by the end of 2024 and stay there until 2025,” Kallum Pickering, senior economist at Berenberg, said in a research note. In contrast, the market curve sees rates rising rapidly to 2.2% by the end of 2022 before being lowered somewhat thereafter,” he says. brakes in 2022 (risking a recession) in order to control inflation,” he says. He expects policymakers to do all they can to avoid triggering a recession and predicts a slower pace of rate hikes than the market in the second half of 2022.

TI Fluid Systems faces cost and market pressure

11:37 GMT – TI Fluid Systems faces potential short-term cost and market pressures, Jefferies said, downgrading the automotive fluid systems maker to hold off on the buy and its 195p price target against 350p. Shares fall 11% to 162p. Jefferies says the company’s ability to recoup higher costs through pricing appears weaker than expected and market expectations for electric car market expansion may need to be tempered. “The conditions facing TFS are among the most challenging in our coverage,” Jefferies analysts said. “While the longer-term equity story remains attractive, it will be another very difficult year. [price target] at 195p.”

Rising Tullow Oil asset values ​​look poised to boost shares

11.36 GMT – Tullow Oil shares need to go higher, says Jefferies, raising its price target on the West African-focused oil producer and explorer to 90p from 65p. Tullow’s net asset value is expected to rise as oil prices boost the company’s valuation heavily weighted to Ghana, Jefferies said. “Tullow’s stock performance has lagged, despite its potential free cash flow generation,” Jefferies analysts said, reiterating their buy target on the stock. “We believe that as the market restores confidence in Tullow’s assets, share price performance should follow.” Shares rise 1.9% to 59p.

William Hill Agreement of 888 seen as transformational

1115 GMT – William Hill’s takeover deal by 888 Holdings will have a transformational impact on the online betting and gaming company with many positive benefits, Peel Hunt says. The UK brokerage firm says management has the ability to realize these benefits and will have a multi-year track to work on extracting synergies and optimizing the business to drive growth. All the challenges that arise from the integration of companies must be taken up in stride by the management, he indicates. Peel Hunt reiterates its buy recommendation on the stock and its price target of 600 pence. 888 shares are trading up 21% at 232 pence.

Entain meets first quarter guidance at start of challenging year

10:58 GMT – Entain’s Q1 trading is consistent with previously reported revenue growth, according to Davy Research. At the start of what is shaping up to be a difficult year for the sector, there are a myriad of headwinds to consider, particularly regulatory changes in the UK. The group’s net gaming revenue rose 31% as retail recovered to within 5% to 10% of pre-Covid-19 levels after stores reopened after closing for closure in the comparable quarter of 2021.

Yields on UK 10-year gilts fall after sharp rise

1049 GMT – UK 10-year borrowing costs are down after a sharp rise the day before, according to data from Tradeweb. The 10-year gilt yield is last trading at 1.686%, down from Wednesday’s close at 1.725% after jumping nearly six basis points on the day, according to the trading platform. . The drop follows a sell-off in U.S. Treasuries across all maturities on Tuesday, triggered by comments from Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard saying she anticipates a rapid runoff from the central bank’s balance sheet. This sell-off in Treasuries resonated in Europe, driving up borrowing costs in the UK.


Contact: London NewsPlus, Dow Jones Newswires; Write to Sarka Halas at [email protected]


(END) Dow Jones Newswire

April 07, 2022 1:28 p.m. ET (5:28 p.m. GMT)

Copyright (c) 2022 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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