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Wednesday Update

DB Live: Asda joins marshall plan; Staffline appoints CEO

5.30pm: Budget cancelled

The Autumn Budget will not take place this year because of the chaos in the economy caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The Chancellor will announce new measures tomorrow.

Full story here

4.30pm: London slips at close

Stock flirted with the 6,000 mark but faded to close 70 points, or 1.2%, higher at 5,899.3.

Weak sentiment in Wall Street may have contributed to the fall in support for the London market, though the biggest factor was growing pandemic impact on the economy.

The UK reported 6,178 new coronavirus cases, its biggest daily rise since 1 May and only a day after new measures were unveiled to try and bring it back under control.

1pm: Asda signs up for marshalls

Supermarket chain Asda is the latest retailer to introduce Covid-19 marshalls to ensure customers wear masks properly and follow stricter Government guidelines over the pandemic.

Morrisons has reinstated marshalls and TK Maxx also has them at the entrances and in the aisles of its stores.

9am: London strongly higher

The FTSE 100 was trading 104 points (1.78%) higher at 5,933 as it confirmed early forecasts (see below) of a rebound from its plunge on Monday. The largely export-focused index benefited from a weaker pound.

Investors are also awaiting PMI data for indications of how the economy performed this month.

Five day performance of FTSE 100 (FTSE Live)

The mid-cap FTSE 250 index rose 1.0% with healthcare sector stocks leading gains.

Shares in beauty products maker PZ Cussons fell 1.2% despite posting a 23% rise in first-quarter revenue on higher sales of hand wash, sanitiser gels and soaps. The company reported revenue of £587.2m for the year to 31 May, a dip of 2.6%.

Fashion and accessories chain Joules was 5% higher at the open after sales performed better than expected in the 13 weeks to 30 August.

Group revenue came in 18% down at £39m because of store closures, but e-commerce shot up 63%.

7am: Staffline appoints CEO

Staffline, the recruitment and training group, has appointed Albert Ellis, currently non-executive director, as chief executive with effect from 1 October.

Mr Ellis was appointed to the board in March and has extensive executive level experience in the recruitment and human capital sectors. Most recently, He served as group chief executive at Harvey Nash Group, the AIM quoted technology recruitment and IT outsourcing group, for 14 years before it was sold in 2018.

In 2017 Staffline acquired Edinburgh-based Brightwork Recruitment.

Hornby sales higher

Hornby, the models and collectibles group, said sales and margins for the period from the 1 April to the 31 August have been higher than the previous year and are higher than internal budgets.

It said the outcome for the full year is subject to the sales rate over the key Christmas trading period and there is the potential for disruption depending on the arrangements for leaving the EU.

Markets

London’s rebound is expected to continue. The FTSE 100 was forecast to open 72 points higher after closing up 25.17 points, or 0.4%, at 5,829.46 on Tuesday.

Wall Street ended in positive territory, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ending up 0.5%, the S&P 500 up 1.1%, and the Nasdaq Composite up 1.7%. The Nikkei 225 index was 0.3% lower.



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