Game Digital (GMD)

 

Pound rises on quantitative easing comments

Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee member Ian McCafferty called for an early unwinding of the quantitative easing programme, prompting a 0.4% bump in sterling against the dollar.

As several of the FTSE's constituents have overseas sales, the blue-chip index struggled to gain momentum and nudged lower to 7,413.

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSB) and BP (BP.) were weak and approximately 0.8% lower at £20.74 and 446.8p.

Brent crude oil surged 1.3% to $48.35 per barrel. Copper cheapened 0.3% to $5,886 per tonne and gold was 0.1% lower at $1,216 per ounce.

OVERSEAS MARKETS

Wall Street was flat today ahead of Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen's second day of testimony to Congress. The S&P 500 was unchanged at 2,443.

FTSE 100 RISERS AND FALLERS

AstraZeneca (AZN) topped the list of FTSE fallers, down 3.5% to £50.13 on reports suggesting CEO Pascal Soirot will be nabbed by Israeli rival Teva.

Engineer Babcock (BAB) flagged a strong performance from 1 April to date and highlighted a contract that could be worth up to £500m to run planes for the Norwegian Health Service from mid-2019. The blue-chip firm nudged 1.4% to 857p.

FTSE 250 RISERS AND FALLERS

Southern Rail operator Go-Ahead (GOG) is being forced to spend £13.4m on performance and passenger improvements following a year littered with train strikes and disruption. Shares in the firm accelerated 1.4% to £17.52.

Sportswear seller Sports Direct (SPD) bought a 26% stake in struggling Game Digital (GMD), sparking an 4.1% rise to 25.2p. Investors were unmoved by the news as Sport Direct remained flat at 302.5p.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Investors wanted more from online fashion retailer ASOS (ASC) as the stock dipped 0.9% to £57.59. This was despite continued momentum into its third quarter and anticipated in-line full year pre-tax profit.

Shares in Arian Silver (AGQ) were weak as the company mined investors for £600,000 to pursue exploration plans at its mining concessions in Mexico, prompting a 20.7% decline to 0.5p.

Fashion retailer N Brown (BWNG) admitted to possible insurance mis-selling through third parties between 2006 and 2014 in its old catalogues business. In response to the news that it is expected to set aside £35m to £40m for potential customer redress, shares in the retailer fell 8.7% to 278p.

Dart (DTG) was concerned about the potential impact of Brexit on leisure air travel, triggering a 6% drop in the share price to 286.1p.