London close: Stocks finish firmer on England reopening progress
(Sharecast News) - London equity markets finished well into positive territory on Tuesday, following a record session on Wall Street, with reopening stocks on the front foot.
The FTSE 100 ended the session up 1.28% at 6,823.55, and the FTSE 250 was 1.2% firmer at 21,994.48.
Sterling was weaker, meanwhile, last falling 0.36% on the dollar to trade at $1.3850, and sliding 0.72% against the euro to €1.1685.
"Boris Johnson helped lift UK stocks with his optimistic outlook yesterday, as the ongoing reopening plans help to lift value stocks throughout the FTSE 350," said IG senior market analyst Joshua Mahont.
"With the likes of Stagecoach, Cineworld, Hammerson, and Card Factory heading up the FTSE 350 gains, it is clear that investors are confident of a domestic bounceback."
Mahony said questions remained around international travel, for while the reopening schedule was unchanged, the prime minister's reluctance to provide a firm go-ahead for 17 May flights was further delaying any potential bout of fresh bookings.
"Nevertheless, with the vaccination programme successfully bringing down transmission rates, there is reason for optimism around the UK reopening process."
Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor, said the recovery trade was "at full throttle", with the major US indices hitting new record highs.
He noted that Monday was the first chance for markets in the US to react to the bumper non-farm payrolls figure from Friday, where a "hugely better-than-expected" 916,000 jobs were added, while the unemployment rate declined to 6%.
In equity markets, oil giant BP finished up 3.47% after saying it expects to hit its $35bn net debt target during the first quarter of 2021 after faster-than-expected progress on its disposals programme.
The company had forecast raising $4bn to $6bn from disposals and said proceeds would now be at the upper end of this range.
Shopping centre owner Hammerson leapt 5.12%, with non-essential shops set to reopen in England next week.
Carnival was 4.99% higher after saying it plans to restart cruising from US ports in July.
Cineworld advanced 6.43%, with traders pointing to a strong performance from AMC Entertainment in the US on Monday after an analyst at B Riley said it was time to buy AMC.
The analyst noted an improving outlook for the balance sheet and a strong opening weekend for 'Godzilla versus Kong'.
He also said that AMC was well-positioned to benefit from the return of film audiences post-pandemic and this has had positive read-across to Cineworld, traders said.
TUI advanced 3.23% even after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was "hopeful" foreign travel could resume on 17 May, but urged people not to book summer holidays yet as more data is needed before a decision can be made.
Tullow Oil gained 1.69% after saying it has started a multi-year, multi-well drilling campaign offshore Ghana, drilling the first well at the Jubilee Field on Monday.
Elsewhere, Hikma Pharmaceuticals was boosted 2.93% by an upgrade to 'overweight' at Morgan Stanley.
AstraZeneca managed gains of 0.15%, having traded weaker earlier following reports that the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is considering restricting use of the company's Covid-19 vaccine for the under-30s due to blood clot concerns.
FTSE 100 (UKX) 6,823.55 1.28%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 21,994.48 1.20%
techMARK (TASX) 4,293.48 0.77%
FTSE 100 - Risers
SSE (SSE) 1,528.00p 4.87%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,756.00p 3.75%
BP (BP.) 299.85p 3.47%
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 1,635.50p 3.45%
Entain (ENT) 1,579.00p 3.30%
Compass Group (CPG) 1,541.50p 3.11%
Scottish Mortgage Inv Trust (SMT) 1,200.00p 3.09%
3i Group (III) 1,208.00p 2.94%
Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK) 2,387.00p 2.93%
Rio Tinto (RIO) 5,634.00p 2.81%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
BT Group (BT.A) 152.45p -2.56%
Next (NXT) 7,920.00p -2.39%
Bunzl (BNZL) 2,322.00p -1.61%
Just Eat Takeaway.Com N.V. (CDI) (JET) 6,828.00p -0.94%
Reckitt Benckiser Group (RKT) 6,438.00p -0.91%
Rentokil Initial (RTO) 496.20p -0.76%
Smith (DS) (SMDS) 411.00p -0.63%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 2,079.00p -0.62%
Experian (EXPN) 2,533.00p -0.51%
Informa (INF) 570.60p -0.24%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Cineworld Group (CINE) 105.60p 6.43%
C&C Group (CDI) (CCR) 294.60p 5.97%
TBC Bank Group (TBCG) 1,078.00p 5.69%
Coats Group (COA) 59.00p 5.36%
Premier Foods (PFD) 99.60p 5.29%
Hammerson (HMSO) 35.55p 5.12%
Oxford Biomedica (OXB) 1,000.00p 5.04%
Carnival (CCL) 1,705.20p 4.88%
TI Fluid Systems (TIFS) 287.00p 4.74%
BlackRock World Mining Trust (BRWM) 598.00p 4.55%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Homeserve (HSV) 1,168.00p -3.63%
Babcock International Group (BAB) 228.40p -3.63%
Aston Martin Lagonda Global Holdings (AML) 1,948.50p -3.49%
Drax Group (DRX) 406.00p -2.78%
Micro Focus International (MCRO) 543.20p -2.65%
Energean (ENOG) 840.00p -2.04%
Provident Financial (PFG) 223.40p -1.93%
Greggs (GRG) 2,273.00p -1.13%
Just Eat Takeaway.Com N.V. (CDI) (JET) 6,828.00p -0.94%
Centrica (CNA) 55.56p -0.79%
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