H&M’s Transition Year

Monday, 17th September: Amongst the clothing retailers, Swedish H&M’s share price jumped around 13% this morning following their third quarter update which revealed a comeback in sales as a result of their efforts to focus their attention on online and budget competition such as ASOS and Primark, as well as talks of taking the firm private and a financing package for further share purchases. In what they call their ‘transition year’, the retailer cut prices, invested in digitisation, located and closed specific stores and expanded newer brands.

The blue-chip index started off the day in positive territory before falling back into red after fresh tariffs were rumoured to be announced on $200 billion Chinese imports from the US, which sent mining companies to the bottom end, weighing heavily on the index, which was not easily offset by efforts from the utilities such as Centrica and SSE, both up 1.85% and 1.60% respectively in early hours of trading. SSE was experiencing a particularly positive afternoon, up even further at circa 3.0% after mid-day trading.

Broadcaster ITV was closer to the bottom end of the index regardless of an anticipated upbeat trading update which is due this week, as they join the battle of several parties interested in buying Dutch production company Endemol Shine Group for $4.0 billion, who are behind the popular programs MasterChef, Big Brother and The Fall. The news sent ITV down more than 1.0% at the end of the day.

The FTSE 100 failed to close in positive ground, meaning it also failed to surpass the resistance threshold of 7,300. However, the index managed to do a decent job of reversing the majority of the losses, and ended the day almost flat, down 0.03% at 7302.

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