Sterling Gains Seen as Limited Amid Economic Headwinds

Sterling's appreciation potential looks limited as the Bank of England is likely to accept a "fairly significant" overshoot of its 2% inflation target given the headwinds facing the economy, Commerzbank says. The 100 basis points of interest rate rises priced in by the market over the course of a year is unlikely, Commerzbank currency analyst Esther Reichelt says. "The headwinds to be expected in the coming months from supply bottlenecks, the consequences of Brexit and the pandemic situation seem too substantial." If the BOE doesn't counter rising price pressures with sufficient policy tightening, higher inflation will weigh on sterling's purchasing power, Reichelt says. EUR/GBP is unlikely to fall below 0.84, she says.

 
Companies News: 

Eurasia Mining Shares Rise on Potential Assets Sale

Shares in Eurasia Mining PLC rose Thursday after the company said that the buyer for its nickel-copper-platinum-group-metals assets has informed the company in writing that it has completed its due diligence, and that the board is considering additional interest from other parties.

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Shell 3Q Adjusted Earnings Fell as Hurricane Ida Hurt Business -- Update

Royal Dutch Shell PLC on Thursday reported that its earnings fell 25% in the third quarter after Hurricane Ida hurt its operations in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Frontier IP FY 2021 Pretax Profit Soars on Revaluation of Investments

Frontier IP Group PLC on Thursday reported a higher pretax profit for fiscal 2021 on the revaluation of its investments.

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Helios Towers 3Q Revenue Rose Boosted by Portfolio Acquisition, Tenancy Growth

Helios Towers PLC on Thursday reported an increased revenue for the third quarter as it benefited from the acquisition of Free Senegal's tower portfolio and continued tenancy growth.

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Polyus 3Q Gold Sales, Production Rose Vs. 2Q

Polyus PJSC on Thursday said gold production and sales strengthened in the third quarter compared with the second, offsetting slightly weaker prices.

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Synthomer to Raise GBP200 Mln; Agrees $1Bln Acquisition

Synthomer PLC said Thursday that it will raise around 200 million pounds ($274.8 million) via an accelerated bookbuild and that it will use the net proceeds to partly fund a $1 billion acquisition in cash.

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Bytes Technology 1H Pretax Profit Rose on Higher Revenue

Bytes Technology Group PLC on Thursday reported a higher pretax profit for the first half of fiscal 2022, and said business in the second half got off to a good start.

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Gem Diamonds Recovered Higher Year-To-Date Carats, But at Lower Price; Shares Fall

Shares in Gem Diamonds Ltd. fell on Thursday after the company said that it recovered more carats for the year to date, but at a lower price.

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Mail.ru 3Q Net Loss Widened

Mail.ru Group Ltd. said Thursday that its net loss widened for the third quarter after booking higher costs and that its target for slight year-on-year margin improvement on 2020's 25.3% remained in place.

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Shell Aims to Halve Carbon Emissions by 2030 as Activist Calls for Breakup

Royal Dutch Shell PLC pledged to halve its carbon-dioxide emissions by 2030, a day after activist investor Third Point LLC called for the breakup of the energy giant to improve its environmental and financial performances.

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Summerway Capital Conditionally Agrees to Buy Vertigrow for GBP80 Mln

Summerway Capital PLC said on Thursday that it has conditionally agreed to buy U.K. pharmaceutical company Vertigrow Technology Ltd. for 80 million pounds ($109.9 million), and that it intends to raise around GBP7 million via a placing.

 
Market Talk: 

Travis Perkins' Robust 3Q Leads to Guidance Upgrades

1003 GMT - Travis Perkins' stronger than expected third quarter results have led to upgraded full year guidance, from at least GBP310 million on Aug. 3 to at least GBP340 million, Goodbody says. Market consensus for the building materials retailer stands at GBP316 million, the Irish brokerage says. Travis Perkins also noted that its core trade customer base remains very robust, though a backdrop of industry wide inflationary pressure has accelerated price inflation to 11% in the third quarter, from 7% in the second. "Overall, this is yet another strong statement from Travis Perkins with continued underlying sales momentum leading to further upgrades," Goodbody says, retaining its hold recommendation. Shares are down 3.9% at 1,523 pence.

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WPP Gets Advertising-Spend Boost; Shares Look Cheap

1001 GMT - WPP tops the FTSE 100 risers, up 5.7% to 1,021 pence after the advertising and marketing group said third-quarter revenue improved beyond pre-pandemic levels and raised its full-year guidance. Shore Capital upgrades its recommendation on the stock to buy from hold, saying the valuation looks modest. "We're pleased to note the very strong progress described in this morning's update, which adds to evidence from multiple sources of a strong recovery in advertising spend globally and in the U.K.," Shore analyst Roddy Davidson says. "On a company-specific basis, we remain confident that WPP's extensive resources and comprehensive global service offer will allow it to add significant value to its diverse blue-chip client base," Davidson says.

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Societe Generale Shares Slip as Leasing Business Mulls Merging With Rival

0959 GMT - Societe Generale shares slip 2% after news its ALD leasing and fleet-management business is in talks over a potential merger with competitor LeasePlan. The French bank said Wednesday that there is no certainty of reaching an agreement. Jefferies analysts says there could be concerns the deal could take up all of SocGen's excess capital--estimated at more than EUR8 billion--or put its organic growth and dividend plans at risk. Questions will center on the deal price and SocGen's shareholding in the combined entity. SocGen owns 80% of ALD, while LeasePlan is owned by a consortium led by TDR Capital, which bought it in 2015 for EUR3.7 billion and ditched an attempt to list it in 2018 for EUR7.5 billion, Jefferies says.

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Lower Supply Keeps 10-Year Gilt Yield Below 1% - Market Talk

0937 GMT - U.K. borrowing costs over a ten-year period remain below 1% Thursday, after the government slashed its planned debt sales this financial year. Figures from the Debt Management Office, published Wednesday shortly after the budget, showed gilt sales were cut by GBP57.8 billion to GBP194.8 billion in the 2021-22 fiscal year, a larger drop than expected. The country's net financing requirement was also reduced sharply relative to the previous forecast, falling by GBP82.8 billion to GBP171.6 billion. The reduction "will have a significant impact on the demand/supply profile of gilts for the rest of this fiscal year," RBC Capital Markets says. The 10-year gilt yield trades last at 0.961%, down from a high of 1.221% a week ago, according to Tradeweb.

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UK Budget Seen Raising Chance of Earlier Rate Rise

0937 GMT - The U.K.'s government's spending and tax plans revailed in the budget Wednesday raise the chance of an earlier interest rate rise, says BNP Paribas Markets 360. "The relatively generosity of the Budget keeps an interest-rate hike on the table this year," a team of analysts says in a note. However, the significant reduction in gilt issuance over the remainder of this fiscal year could also make curtailing quantitative easing early a more attractive prospect for the Bank of England's monetary policy committee, they say. The Debt Management Office announced gilt sales were slashed by GBP57.8 billion to GBP194.8 billion in the 2021-22 fiscal year, a larger cut than analysts had expected.

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Shell Drops Amid Pressure For Break-Up

0930 GMT - Royal Dutch Shell London-listed shares top the FTSE 100 fallers, down 3.4% after the oil major missed third-quarter earnings forecasts. However, the bigger story is an activist investor calling for a break-up of the company, AJ Bell says. "Third Point effectively argues that Shell has lost focus, as it can't run a business with conflicting strategies of trying to go green via renewable energy and retaining oil and gas production," Bell's investment director Russ Mould says. "One would have thought Shell will fight any opposition now to do the splits, but it's a decision that may have to be made at some point."

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Shell Falls After 3Q Profit Miss

0913 GMT - Shares in Shell are down 2.8% after the energy giant reported lower-than-expected earnings for the third quarter. Adjusted earnings of $4.14 billion are particularly disappointing and well below expectations of $5.42 billion, CMC Markets analyst Michael Hewson says. "Given how much fossil fuel prices have risen this quarter, today's number are a particularly poor outcome, even if you factor in the disruptions from Hurricane Ida, which cost the business $400 million." Shell has also noted higher costs elsewhere, but has said the fourth quarter would see a better performance due to lower maintenance costs, Hewson says.

 

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

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 28, 2021 06:22 ET (10:22 GMT)

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