Wednesday 22 May 2019

FTSE 100 makes gains despite share shock for Glencore

London’s top-flight stocks rebounded after a difficult start on Monday.

Glencore faces an investigation over allegations of money laundering (PA)
Glencore faces an investigation over allegations of money laundering (PA)

By Helen Cahill, Press Association City Reporter

The FTSE 100 made gains on Tuesday despite taking a hit on the news that Glencore had become embroiled in a money-laundering probe.

Glencore’s shares tanked when the mining giant said it was slapped with a US subpoena.

The company said the US Department of Justice is seeking documents and other records “with respect to compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and United States money-laundering statutes”.

Information has been requested regarding Glencore’s businesses in Nigeria, Venezuela and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Glencore’s shares slumped 10% on the news, and closed the day down 8.1% or 28.3p at 321p, making it the biggest faller on the FTSE 100.

The FTSE 100 took a knock initially, but closed the session 0.6% or 45.44 points higher at 7,593.29.

European indices rebounded after losses on Monday. With political tensions easing in Germany, the Dax was up 0.91%. In France, the Cac 40 rose 0.77%.

David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets, said: “Stocks are higher as improved political relations in Germany and constructive trade comments from China have lifted investor sentiment.

“Angela Merkel has brokered a deal with Horst Seehofer which will keep their alliance intact.

“The positive mood might not last long though, as the Social Democrats need to inspect the agreement.”

Oil prices have settled somewhat, having made major losses on Monday after Donald Trump suggested Saudi Arabia would hike production.

In late afternoon, Brent crude prices were down 0.26% at 77.252 US dollars a barrel.

Sterling edged up against the dollar after data showed construction activity had hit a seven-month high.

Britain’s builders enjoyed a surge in work last month, with the latest Markit/CIPS UK construction purchasing managers’ index showing a reading of 53.1 in June, up from 52.5 in May and the highest since November.

Sterling was up 0.35% against the dollar at 1.318, and rose 0.16% against the euro at 1.130.

In UK stocks, WPP is set to go up against its former chief executive, Sir Martin Sorrell, in a takeover tussle for control of Netherlands-based MediaMonks.

Sir Martin’s new firm, S4 Capital, and WPP have emerged as two of the interested parties. Shares in WPP edged down 1p to 1,159p.

The bidding war could rise as high as 300 million euros (£264 million) for MediaMonks, which specialises in digital advertising and production.

Shares in manufacturing firm McBride fell after the company warned that profits will not meet market expectations, its second profit warning this year.

Sales were weaker than expected in May and June, which McBride said would leave profits “marginally below” analysts’ expectations for the full year.

McBride’s input costs have remained stable since January, but the manufacturer’s operating costs were pushed up because it increased sales volumes in the final quarter of the financial year.

By the close, McBride’s shares were down 4.55% or 6p to 126p.

The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were BT Group up 6.15p at 223p, British American Tobacco up 90p to 3,910p, Evraz up 11.2p to 503p, and Severn Trent up 42p to 2,018p.

The biggest fallers on the FTSE 100 were Glencore down 28.3p to 321p, Micro Focus International down 108p to 1,235.5p, RSA Insurance down 21.6p to 656.4p and Burberry down 57p to 2,091p.

Press Association

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