The FTSE 100 closed down 0.34% on Wednesday, losing most of the prior day's gains, though most investors focused on U.K. Chancellor of Exchequer Rishi Sunak's budget. The chancellor delivered a welcome boost to leisure and hospitality, with a temporary cut in business rates joining reduced alcohol taxes, IG Group PLC senior market analyst Joshua Mahony says. The latest U.K. economic forecasts also make for positive reading, though the chancellor's push towards fiscal discipline could raise questions, given Bank of England is predicted to raise rates next week, Mr. Mahony says. The idea of raising rates at the same time and fiscal tightening signals a potential squeeze on an economy still finding its feet after a damaging 19-months, Mr. Mahony says.

 
Companies News: 
 

Redcentric Says 1H Revenue Was Broadly Stable; Backs Guidance Despite Supply-Chain Issues

Redcentric PLC said Wednesday that it expects to report that its performance for the first half of fiscal 2022 was broadly in line with that of the same period a year earlier, while it sees business for the remainder of the year in line with expectations despite supply-chain issues.

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Restore Buys Records Management Business the Document Warehouse

Restore PLC on Wednesday said that it has acquired the records-management business The Document Warehouse for 6.5 million pounds ($8.9 million).

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Vianet Group Says 1H Revenue Jumped; Expects 2H to Underline Dividend Reinstatement

Vianet Group PLC said Wednesday that revenue jumped in the first half of fiscal 2022, and that it expects second-half cash generation to enable the reinstatement of a dividend in July for the fiscal year given that there aren't any further Covid-19 restrictions or a worsening in the semiconductor supply.

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Urban Logistics Proposes Move to FTSE Main Market, Share Placing

Urban Logistics REIT PLC on Wednesday proposed a move to the premium segment of the London Stock Exchange's main market from the alternative investment market in early December, and to authorize a placing program of up to 350 million shares.

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Atalaya Mining Declares Inaugural Dividend, New Dividend Policy

Atalaya Mining PLC said Wednesday that it has declared an inaugural dividend of around $54.6 million, priced at $0.395 per ordinary share, and approved a dividend policy.

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Softline Holding Prices IPO at Bottom End of Range

Softline Holding PLC on Wednesday priced its initial public offering at $7.50 per global depositary receipt, the bottom of the preset range, implying a market capitalization of $1.5 billion.

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Katoro Gold Shares Rise on Joint-Venture IPO News

Shares in Katoro Gold PLC rose on Wednesday after the company said it has agreed with its partner Target Mine Consulting Ltd. to create a new company out of their Blyvoor Joint Venture and seek to list it on the London Stock Exchange.

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KCR Residential REIT CEO to Step Down After AGM; Successor Named

KCR Residential REIT PLC said Wednesday that Chief Executive Dominic White will move to a nonexecutive position on the board following the annual general meeting on Nov. 19, and that Russell Naylor will take over as CEO.

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Bushveld Minerals Agrees on Duferco Convertible Loan Note Payment

Bushveld Minerals Ltd. said Wednesday that it has agreed on final terms for the repayment of $11.5 million in unsecured convertible loan notes held by Duferco Participations Holding SA.

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Sumo Group Agrees to Loan Revision

Sumo Group PLC said Wednesday that it has agreed to a revision of its revolving credit facility with Clydesdale Bank PLC.

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CAP-XX's 1Q Sales Strong Despite Covid-19 Restrictions

CAP-XX Ltd. said Wednesday that its first-quarter sales were strong despite disruption to manning and production, and that sales orders remain robust.

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Firering Strategic Minerals to Float in London on Nov 12; To Raise GBP4.0 Mln

Firering Strategic Minerals PLC said on Wednesday that it expects to float on the London Stock Exchange on Nov. 12 and that it expects to raise a capital of 4.0 million pounds ($5.5 million).

 
Market Talk: 

Wickes Still Could Positively Surprise Despite Prior Upgrades

0929 GMT - Wickes has posted a solid third-quarter update with continued repair, maintenance and improvement market and self-help market buoyancy, allowing it to maintain guidance, Liberum says. The building-supplies retailer's strong result in the current environment comes after two rounds of upgrades since its spinoff in April and still leaves some scope for outperformance in its full-year numbers, the brokerage says. Wickes looks like one of the best ways to invest in the U.K. repair, maintenance and improvement market, and its shares still look too cheap for the high-quality growth, profit momentum and strong cash generation on offer, Liberum says. Liberum retains its buy rating on the stock with a price target of 420.0 pence.

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UK Public Finances Still Not Out of the Woods

0849 GMT - U.K. Treasury chief Rishi Sunak is likely to present a better state of the public finances than initially forecast when he announces the autumn Budget in parliament later Wednesday, says UniCredit. The better situation may not last, however, as it's largely due to one-off factors, reflecting an underspend on Covid-19 support measures, analysts at the bank say. Economic growth has slowed materially, while rising inflation and a higher yield curve will add to debt-servicing costs, analysts at the bank say. Bank of England rate-setters said they will have to act to tackle stubbornly high inflation, raising the risk of higher interest rates fairly soon. This would increase the cost to the Treasury of the BOE remunerating reserve balances at the bank rate, they say.

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UK's Sunak Unlikely to Unveil 'Big Giveaways'

0830 GMT - U.K. Treasury chief Rishi Sunak is likely stress the need for fiscal responsibility at Wednesday's Budget, says UniCredit. Sunak will likely announce new fiscal rules, including balancing the current budget and putting the debt-to-GDP ratio on a declining path by 2024-25, analysts at the bank say, adding "we are not expecting any big giveaways today." There will very likely be some measures to address the government's manifesto pledges, they say, including on "leveling up" the economy, the green transition to "net zero" and health and social care, some of which have been pre-announced... But the main message "is that there will be a significant tightening of fiscal policy over the next couple of years."

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Apparel Recycling Could Be on Verge of a Giant Leap

0829 GMT - Textile recycling might not be sexy, but innovation in the field is vital to the pressing issue of waste in the fashion industry, Laudes Foundation CEO Leslie Johnston tells The Wall Street Journal. Mixed materials in most garments have stymied large-scale recycling of clothes, with the materials often simply chopped up and used as insulation for want of a better solution, Johnston says. But there have been exciting advances in chemical recycling able to melt fabrics in order to reuse them, and major apparel brands have invested in the technology. "It could really revolutionize the back end of the industry," Johnston says.

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Sustainability in Textiles Is a Multifaceted Concern

0820 GMT - A number of elements go in to ensuring the sustainability of textiles used in making clothes, including environmental and labor concerns, Leslie Johnston of the Laudes Foundation tells The Wall Street Journal. Ensuring responsible use of water in textile production and eliminating harmful chemicals are both vital to guaranteeing sustainability in apparel manufacture, as promoted by the environmental nonprofit's Fashion for Good campaign. The treatment of garment workers, including fair wages, is also a key plank of sustainability, while efforts to recycle more are also increasingly important given overproduction in the industry, Johnston says.

 

Contact: London NewsPlus, Dow Jones Newswires; Write to Sarka Halas at sarka.halas@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 27, 2021 12:05 ET (16:05 GMT)

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