Press | Vox Markets
SPD
Sports Direct International (SPD) – Ashley’s House of Fraser gamble chimes with his wider strategy. Deal for UK department store group is latest in run of strategic bets by high-profile retailer
SPD
Sports Direct International (SPD) – House of Fraser owed £484million to creditors including Armani, Diesel and Prada before it was bought by Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct, new documents reveal
RBS
HSBA
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) finance chief confirms exit from state-owned bank in September to take up same role at rival lender HSBC Holdings (HSBA)
SPD
Sports Direct International (SPD) – Frank Field urges Mike Ashley to take on House of Fraser pension scheme
BATS
IMB
British American Tobacco (BATS), Imperial Brands (IMB) – Controversial proposals to relax laws on e-cigarettes have been warmly welcomed by leading tobacco companies. Parliament’s Science and Technology Committee published its finding into vaping on Friday with its chair saying e-cigarettes “could be a key weapon in the NHS’s stop smoking arsenal”. Users should be allowed to vape in public places such as offices and public transport, MPs recommended.
GPH
Global Ports Holding (GPH) shrugs off Turkish volatility as weak lira bolsters profits
IRV
Interserve (IRV) wins £105m construction contract for Durham University
KGF
City scribblers rounded up on B&Q owner Kingfisher (KGF) to drag its shares down to a five-year low. Analysts at HSBC, RBC and UBS all trimmed their price targets for the DIY giant as it struggles to turn around its ailing French businesses.
KAZ
Kaz Minerals (KAZ) slumped a further 81.7p to 478.5p, a fresh one-year low, after Credit Suisse blasted its decision to snap up a $900m mine in the far east of Russia. In a downgrade to “neutral”, it warned that the company’s outlook had been “turned on its head” by the acquisition.
AIEA
AIREA (AIEA) jumped 5.5p to 60p after its performance improved following the closure of its carpets business.
GPH
Full steam ahead for Global Ports Holding (GPH) despite swings in Turkish lira. The world’s largest cruise port operator, whose directors include Lord Mandelson, has sought to reassure investors over its exposure to the crisis in Turkey
IRV
A consortium led by Interserve (IRV), the troubled outsourcer, has been awarded a £105 million contract by Durham University, boosting attempts to turn the company around.
RBS
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) has temporarily handed Katie Murray its top finance job while it decides who to appoint to the role permanently.
A healthcare technology company founded by Lord Drayson, the entrepreneur and former science minister, rose strongly on its stock market debut yesterday. , which raised £60 million through an initial public offering, valuing it at £225 million, closed up 12½p at 187½p on the junior Aim market in its first day of dealings.
KAZ
Spooked investors sold off Kaz Minerals (KAZ) as fears resurfaced over its $900 million deal to buy a Russian copper project from Roman Abramovich, the owner of Chelsea Football Club, and some of his business associates.
BATS
IMB
Tobacco companies were buoyed by a parliamentary report that said e-cigarettes could be a key weapon in the NHS’s mission to reduce the harmful impacts of smoking. British American Tobacco (BATS) welcomed the report and rose 45p to £42.03. Imperial Brands (IMB) wafted up 4p to £29.87½.
MARS
GNK
Fears over rising costs hurt the brewers, with Marston’s (MARS) down ¾p to 93¼p and Greene King (GNK) off 2¼p at 482p. In a research note, Trevor Stirling at Bernstein said the sharp fall in the size of the western European malting barley crop due to the hot, dry weather could drive a big increase in the cost of sourcing the crop. However, both British brewers are likely to have long-term contracts in place and will be confident of being able to mitigate any price rise. Mr Stirling also cited rising aluminium prices as a potential further hit.
SLA
Standard Life Aberdeen (SLA) – Hugh Young, the company’s head of Asia and long-time star fund manager, cashed in £162,000 of shares at the start of the week, the company revealed in a stock exchange filing yesterday. Investors did not appear too concerned as the stock closed up 1¼p at 317¼p.
SDX
SDX Energy Inc. (DI) (SDX) rose 3p to 58p after announcing that a successful production test had been conducted at its test well at South Disouq in Egypt.
MDZ
MediaZest (MDZ) plunged after the company said project delays had caused a 6% drop in revenues to £2.8 million for the year. That resulted in a 75% increase in its pre-tax operating loss, at £256,000 compared with a loss of £146,000 in 2017.
7DIG
Dealers piled into 7digital (7DIG) after it said it had signed a contract to provide access to music preview clips to Triller, the music video app whose 29 million users include Victoria’s Secret models.
DEB
Up to 200 Debenhams (DEB) head office jobs at risk in move to cut costs. Fashion and homeware consultations part of attempt to streamline management
SPD
Sports Direct International (SPD) – House of Fraser cancels online orders and refunds customers. Retailer acts on complaints as dispute with warehouse operator holds up deliveries
RMG
Royal Mail (RMG) changes course on ‘outdated’ redirection fees. Cost will be ‘per household’ not ‘per surname’ so modern families are not penalised
SPD
Lombard – Ashley shows marmalade-dropping restraint on pay. Sports Direct International (SPD) chief executive receives no salary or bonus
MONY
GOCO
Moneysupermarket.com Group (MONY), Gocompare.com Group (GOCO) – Amazon insurance talks push comparison sites lower. Shares fall on reports online retailer in discussions to establish UK prices website
SBRY
Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) – Asda growth streak continues
RNK
Mecca Bingo owner sees profits fall 40% after ‘challenging year’. Rank Group (RNK) blamed lower casino revenues pushed down by new regulations
RBS
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) bankers joked about crashing the US housing market and likened mortgage trading at the lender to ‘organised crime’
MSLH
Homeowners cashing in their pensions to spruce up their patios lifts paving firm Marshalls (MSLH)
OTB
On The Beach Group (OTB) the online travel agent bought luxury package holiday retailer Classic Collection for £20million. Classic Collection is set to take On the Beach in a different direction, as it sells its beach holidays through physical independent high street travel agents.
CTH
CMBN
CareTech Holding (CTH) revealed it had finally had its bid for Cambian Group (CMBN) accepted by the company. CareTech is set to pay £372million for Cambian, less than it had originally proposed. The offer, which will give shareholders 190p in cash or 100p and 0.3 CareTech shares, has already been accepted by a majority of Cambian’s investors.
ABZA
Abzena (ABZA) saw its shares rocket 9.1p, to 15.1p as it recommended shareholders accept a £34million takeover offer from US private equity firm WCAS.
KGF
Kingfisher (KGF) – B&Q is basking in our scorching summer after winter slump as heatwave boosts sales
RIO
Rio Tinto (RIO) hires bankers to sell its £4.7bn Canadian iron-ore operations
CHG
Chemring Group (CHG) awarded £73m contract from US department of defence to upgrade its mine detectors
MONY
GOCO
Moneysupermarket.com Group (MONY), Gocompare.com Group (GOCO) – Now Amazon plots assault on the UK insurance market as it could offer motor and home cover
DEB
Debenhams (DEB) to axe nearly 100 jobs in cost-cutting drive
KGF
Kingfisher (KGF) – B&Q bounces back as shoppers seek out fans and paddling pools
SBRY
Asda clocks fifth quarter of rising sales ahead of Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) tie-up
CWD
Countrywide (CWD) set for shareholder revolt over incentive scheme
JKX
Ukraine MP snaps up JKX Oil & Gas (JKX) stake from activist fund. Proxima Capital has sold its almost 20% stake to a Cayman Island-based investment fund, Cascade, owned by businessman and politician Vitalii Khomutynnik in a deal which marks the end to its more than three year campaign to wrest control of the group.
OTB
On The Beach Group (OTB) goes offline by targeting high street travel agents
SKY
The Takeover Panel has confirmed its ruling that Disney might have to offer at least £14 a share to buy pay-television group Sky (SKY)
OCDO
Signs the move to online shopping is accelerating in the US helped Ocado Group (OCDO) jump 40p to £10.57 in London in the wake of its deal with American grocer Kroger.
KAZ
Kaz Minerals (KAZ) rallied off a 13-month low after placating unruly investors with its first dividend in six years.
MSLH
Marshalls (MSLH) climbed 61p to 483.4p after revealing that it has identified a number of takeover targets.
SUMM
Summit Therapeutics (SUMM) soared 3.5p to 38p after bagging an extra $12m of funding for the development of an antibiotic to treat clostridium difficile infection.
PFC
Petrofac Ltd. (PFC) slipped 10.8p to 605.4p on a Jefferies downgrade to “neutral”.
SDR
Schroders (SDR) considering board seat for daughter Leonie Fane. Schroders is considering putting the daughter of Bruno Schroder on its board when the City grandee stands down despite her lack of experience in financial services.
CMBN
CTH
Cambian Group (CMBN) has reached a deal to be acquired by CareTech Holding (CTH) which values Cambian at 200p a share on a cash and shares basis (£372 million) or 190p on a cash-only alternative, worth £354 million. The terms are below the initial 220p cash-and-shares and 200p cash approach initially made last month.
SPD
Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct International (SPD) has decided to cancel and refund all House of Fraser online orders that have not been sent as its row over payment terms with XPO Logistics worsened yesterday.
KGF
Pools and barbecues at B&Q have Kingfisher (KGF) flying higher. Europe’s second-largest home improvement retailer said that like-for-like sales jumped 4.2% in the UK and Ireland, rising 3.6% at B&Q and 5.5% at Screwfix, which caters for professional builders.
FPM
Faroe Petroleum (FPM) angry at ‘self-serving’ DNO board bid. Faroe Petroleum has accused DNO of trying to acquire it on the cheap after the Norwegian company tried to claim two seats on its board.
RNK
Rank Group (RNK) – Britain’s largest casino chain and the operator behind Mecca Bingo blamed lucky high-spending gamblers, snow and sunshine as it reported a 41 per cent drop in profits.
HSBA
HSBC Holdings (HSBA) has become the latest bank to say it will raise interest rates on some savings accounts, although it will do so by 0.1 percentage points for most. The Bank of England raised the base rate this month by 0.25%
KAZ
Kaz Minerals (KAZ) is to pay its first dividend in six years as the Kazakhstan-focused copper miner seeks to placate investors disgruntled at its $900 million move into Russia.
SKY
Takeover panel confirms £14 ruling on Disney bid for Sky (SKY). The Takeover Panel, which oversees takeovers of UK-listed companies and must ensure all shareholders are treated equally in a bid battle, said yesterday that after various appeals it was upholding its previous decision to set a “floor” of £14 a share for a possible mandatory Disney offer for Sky.
OTB
On The Beach Group (OTB) has snapped up Classic Collection Holidays for £20 million. In its first foray outside the digital world, On the Beach is hoping to access a part of the market where customers buy luxury beach-break packages through third parties such as travel agencies.
COB
Cobham (COB) inquiry over. The FCA has dropped its investigation into Cobham’s handling of inside information ahead of a £500 million rights issue last year.
CWD
Countrywide (CWD) pay row. Troubled estate agency group Countrywide is facing a shareholder revolt over plans for three top executives to receive more than £20 million as part of a £140 million rescue package.
DRX
Drax Group (DRX) – The FTSE 250 energy giant that is switching from burning coal to renewable biomass, has been in demand after receiving a boost from government subsidies.
OBC
Online Blockchain (OBC) was out of favour yesterday after announcing a deal to buy part of a US gaming start-up. In a sign that investors’ excitement over the mention of blockchain may be waning, the shares fell by 6½p to 38p after it said it was paying $100,000 for a 35% interest in Encryptid Gaming.
OTB
On The Beach Group (OTB) said that its full-year pre-tax profits would be broadly in line with expectations even though the hot summer reduced demand for holidays abroad.
MONY
Reports of Amazon planning to launch a UK price comparison website sent Moneysupermarket.com Group (MONY) to the bottom of the mid-cap index.
SUMM
Summit Therapeutics (SUMM) was on the ascent after it announced an additional $12 million investment from the US health department to support its development of ridinilazole, an antibiotic treatment for Clostridium difficile, a bowel infection.
FDEV
Frontier Developments (FDEV) rebounded as fears eased over regulations in China eased. Gaming stocks fell after that announcement, with Frontier down 67p at 958p. However, an argument that China’s regulatory approval slowdown would not be permanent, began to win over investors, sending the shares up 47p to £10.05.
PRU
AV.
LGEN
OML
RSA
ADM
DLG
MONY
GOCO
Tempus ( Prudential (PRU), Aviva (AV.), Legal & General Group (LGEN), Old Mutual (OML), RSA Insurance Group (RSA), Admiral Group (ADM), Direct Line Insurance Group (DLG), Moneysupermarket.com Group (MONY) – Outlook: Neutral. Financial results are mixed because of the weather but underlying trends are solid and the outlook for motor premiums is better than expected:- Insurers – Amazon’s next big disruption could be to the insurance market but it has not worried investors in traditional insurers. This is because the UK’s insurance sector has already been resoundingly disrupted. More than 66% of motor insurance is distributed through price comparison websites, up from just 20% a few years ago, while almost 60% of home insurance is sold through websites such as Gocompare.com Group (GOCO) and Comparethemarket.
MSLH
Tempus – Marshalls (MSLH): Buy. Strong commercial and public sector demand is helping the sun to shine
GOCO
MONY
ADM
Internet giant Amazon is planning to launch into the insurance industry with price comparison websites that could rival the likes of Comparethemarket and GoCompare, reports today claimed. The news triggered a near-10% crash in shares of Gocompare.com Group (GOCO), whose major shareholder Sir Peter Wood this week agreed a £1.2 billion sale of his Esure business. Moneysupermarket.com Group (MONY) fell 4% and Admiral Group (ADM), the owner of Confused.com, slipped 1.8%.
RNK
The government’s anti-money laundering crackdown is hitting profits at London’s casinos, the boss of leisure giant Rank Group (RNK) said on Thursday.
KGF
People flocking to B&Q to buy barbecues and paddling pools helped boost owner Kingfisher (KGF) sales but a disappointing performance in France on Thursday cast doubt over its turnaround efforts.
SVS
Investors to spend £900m on meeting demand for student housing. Savills (SVS) predicted the 2018 spend on buying land or existing properties to transform into student housing would be strong despite fears Brexit could hit funding for research programmes, which may mean fewer high-spending foreign students here.