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Jaguar goes electric; FTSE 100 soars; Rolls-Royce CFO


4.30pm: FTSE 100 soars

London stocks enjoyed their single best session of the year, with the FTSE 100 soaring 166.32 points (2.52%) to close at 6,756.11.

The FTSE 100 today

With the possibility of markets reopening, travel and leisure stocks enjoyed a rare day of gains.

British Airways owner IAG was up 6.76% while  easyJet climbed 6.56%.

Premier Inn owner Whitbread added 7.11%, caterer Compass Group rose 6.14% and travel operator TUI was 9.15% firmer.

Cineworld soared 10.59%, National Express was 10.98% higher, FirstGroup flew 7.31% and WH Smith was up 12.34%.

Pub chain Mitchells & Butlers was also higher, rising 7.91% after reporting plans to raise £350m through an open offer.

Banks were in favour, with Barclays up 5.52%, NatWest (RBS) ahead 4.87% and Lloyds 5.36% firmer.

Oil giants BP and Shell benefited from the rising oil price, up by 6.53% and 6.1% respectively.

3.30pm: Jaguar Land Rover’s electric dreams

Jaguar cars will be all-electric by 2025 and the entire Jaguar Land Rover range by 2030, the brands’ owner has said.

In a boost to UK vehicle manufacturing it said it would keep all three of its three British plants open as part of the strategy.

However, it has dropped plans to build an electric version of its XJ luxury saloon model, which was to have been built at its Castle Bromwich plant.

The company plans to spend about £2.5bn a year on new technology for its cars, including investment in hydrogen fuel technology.

It hopes the change will see it reverse last year’s record £3.6bn loss which forced it to lay off 4,500 staff worldwide.

7am: Celtic swing to loss

Celtic v Hearts Scottish cup

Celtic swung to a half-year loss of £5.9 million compared to a profit of £24.4m last time on a 23.7% fall in revenue to £40.7m (2019: £53.3m).

The Scottish Premiership champions, who won the delayed Scottish Cup in December, suffered from the loss of attendance income and a decision not to sell players.

In a stock market statement on the interim figures to 31 December, chairman Ian Bankier said: “Our strategy for season 2020/21 was to invest in the team and to retain our best players, with the objective of delivering the league championship.

“As a result, gains from player trading were minimal. The effects of Covid-19 have persisted longer than many could have envisaged and, as a result, our crucial match day and other income streams derived from our stadium have been reduced to negligible proportions.

“These two factors largely explain the reduction in our profit before tax. No football club is immune from the effects of Covid-19.”

Celtic may break up squad after plunging to loss

Mitchells & Butlers cash call

sheep Heid

Pub chain Mitchells & Butlers is raising £350 million through a fully underwritten fully pre-emptive open offer of shares backed by its key investors.

Bob Ivell, chairman of Mitchells & Butlers, which owns the Horseshoe and Drum & Monkey in Glasgow and the Sheep Heid in Duddingston, said: “Mitchells & Butlers was a high performing business going into the pandemic and this capital raising and refinancing will provide the business with the certainty of funding that it needs in order to emerge in a stronger position.”

Tycoons take control of Mitchells & Butlers

Rolls-Royce CFO appointed

Rolls-Royce has appointed Panos Kakoullis as chief financial officer and executive director succeeding Stephen Daintith who is leaving, as previously announced with interim results last year.

Mr Kakoullis has spent his career at Deloitte, which he joined as a graduate. He worked with a wide range of multinational corporations combining audit, advisory and transaction services and was, until May 2019, global head of Deloitte’s audit and assurance practice. More recently Panos worked with PA Consulting. 

University collaboration

The University of Glasgow has entered into a four-year research collaboration with pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly that aims to discover and validate the next generation of drug targets for immunological diseases. 

The £4.6million research collaboration will focus on psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibrosis and vasculitis and will be led by the University of Glasgow’s Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation.

6am: Markets

The FTSE 100 was poised to follow Asia’s positive start to the week.

Japan’s Nikkei pushed through 30,000 for the first time in 31 years.

On Wall Street President Biden is expected to turn his full attention to the economic bail-out package.

Back home, a fifth of the UK population has been inoculated against coronavirus, prompting optimism of a staged reopening of the economy.

Crude oil prices were up by about 2% in early Monday trading, though this was based more on rising tensions between Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

On the corporate front the week will be dominated by updates from banks and miners.

Glencore, BHP Group, Rio Tinto and Hochschild Mining lead the mining companies reporting.

Barclays will be the first of the FTSE 100 banks to report its full-year earnings numbers, with NatWest (RBS) following on Friday.

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