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UPDATE 2-Financials, miners lead FTSE 100 rebound, but Burberry, Thomas Cook slip

Reuters | Updated: 16-05-2019 22:29 IST | Created: 16-05-2019 22:29 IST
UPDATE 2-Financials, miners lead FTSE 100 rebound, but Burberry, Thomas Cook slip
Rallying banks and mining stocks lifted Britain's FTSE 100 on Thursday, but weak earnings hit luxury brand Burberry and Thomas Cook was floored by a profit warning.

The main index bounced 0.8%, gaining for the third consecutive session, and the mid-caps gained by the same margin, helped by strong earnings reports. UK shares, along with their European counterparts, reversed initial losses after a strong open on Wall Street, which was lifted by earnings and strong economic data, despite U.S. curbs on China's Huawei heigtening trade tensions.

Miners jumped nearly 2%, continuing a three-day winning streak, as iron ore futures scaled a record high on strong demand, while aluminium prices also rose as production shutdowns at one of China's biggest smelters fuelled supply worries. Private equity firm 3i advanced 3.2% after reporting a jump in total returns.

Exporters were also lifted after the pound neared a four-month low as Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May fought to keep her Brexit deal intact, amid growing fears of a disorderly departure from the European Union. However, Burberry slumped 5.9% on its worst day since January after reporting a drop in adjusted operating profit.

National Grid slipped 3.4% - its biggest one-day drop this year - after reporting a drop in earnings and the opposition Labour Party announced plans to take energy networks back into state ownership if elected. On the FTSE small-cap index, Thomas Cook slumped more than 14.7%, after earlier hitting a more than 6-1/2-year low, as the travel group said economic and political uncertainty would hit its profit this summer.

Its larger rival TUI fell 2.5%, while easyJet slipped 2.1% and IAG gave up 1.2%. The midcap index drew some strong news-related moves.

Livestock genetics firm Genus jumped 14.1% after a deal to license its know-how on virus-resistant pigs to Beijing Capital Agribusiness, which will seek regulatory approval for the pigs in the world's biggest pork market. Cyber security firm Sophos surged 14% on its best day in more than a year after reporting higher-than-expected annual earnings, while Premier Oil jumped 8.8% as it hiked its production target.

Metro Bank slumped 8.1% after the Financial Times reported that its share placing might be priced at a 10% discount. After the market close Metro Bank announced plans to raise 350 million pounds at a price of 500 pence per share, a 7.3% discount to Thursday's closing price. (Reporting by Muvija M and Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; editing by Larry King and Alexander Smith)


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