The FTSE opened cautiously optimistic despite a tough session across Asian bourses as markets had no Wall Street lead after their close for Independence Day. Persimmon shares began positively after declaring first half revenue had risen 5.1% as consumer confidence continues to persevere despite the obvious headwinds across the UK. This also helped other house builders’ shares climb but eventually Persimmon shares closed -0.28%. Associated British Foods, best known for being the parent frim to Primark saw their shares sink to the bottom of the FTSE where they remained all day after a more downbeat trading update. Growth at the popular high-street retailer has slowed, which the Group put down to the changes and delays in selling space. In comparison, Supergroup who own Superdry continued to relish in the Athlesiure world and their trading update sent shares >8% higher as they topped the FTSE 250. Fiscal pretax profit fell 23% but they stated there was good underlying growth to sales and underlying profit alongside the announcement of a special dividend (Shares eventually settled at 6.3% higher). C&C Group who manufacture alcoholic and soft drinks including Bulmers have seen a boost to trade from the good weather and World Cup, shares ticked 0.8% higher.
The governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, spoke today at Newcastle for a Northern powerhouse summit. He has alluded to a rate rise in August after stating that recent data has given him greater confidence that first quarter growth was affected by adverse weather. With a noticeable bounce back in household spending and sentiment. This has cause the pound to slide higher and he also mentioned how good England winning the World Cup would be for the economy. So, next time someone argues that footballers get paid too much these days… actually forget that no amount of GDP boost can offset the likes of Daniel Sturridge getting paid £120,000 per week.
As we write, American markets have opened higher with the Dow up 0.6%, with the S&P and NASDAQ making even higher intraday gains. The pound is flat versus the dollar and down 0.3% versus the euro. Oil is currently just above the $78 p/bbl mark.