Monday 23 September 2019

London market dragged down by Convatec shares plunge

The FTSE 100 Index closed down 8.47 points to 7,526.97, with Convatec chalking up the biggest fall on the top flight.

London Stock Exchange
London Stock Exchange

By Ben Woods, Press Association Chief City Correspondent

London’s premier index drifted lower on Monday after shares in medical products maker Convatec took a battering over supply problems.

The FTSE 100 Index closed down 8.47 points to 7,526.97, with Convatec chalking up the biggest fall on the top flight after seeing its third-quarter performance “severely impacted” by supply issues, and lower-than-anticipated revenue from new products.

Shares in the group plunged more than 26%, down 74.3p to 205p, as it now expects full-year organic revenue growth to be between 1% and 2%.

Convatec's share price (PA)

European markets were enjoying a brighter session, with Germany’s Dax up 0.1% and the Cac 40 in France lifting by 0.2%.

Sterling appeared to shrug off the latest concerns surrounding Brexit, as the pound recorded a marginal fall of 0.1% against the US dollar at 1.328.

Negotiations between the UK and the European Union are close to breakdown, according to Bloomberg, which reported that talks would collapse within weeks unless the focus moves onto trade.

Meanwhile, John McDonnell said Tory MPs were in talks with Labour to prevent Britain leaving the EU without a deal.

The Labour shadow chancellor said he believes Theresa May lacks a majority in the House of Commons for no deal, adding he is “not willing to countenance” such an outcome.

The UK currency was flat versus the euro at 1.124.

Oil prices were gathering momentum as conflict between the Iraqi government and the Kurds around the city of Kirkuk threatened to disrupt supply.

Brent crude lifted 0.8% to $57.61 a barrel, as a drop in the number of US oil rigs also helped to support the price.

In UK stocks, the London-listed miners were among the biggest risers following the latest slew of inflation data from China showing its consumer price index rose 1.6% in September from a year ago in line with expectations.

Shares in Antofagasta and Glencore climbed 19p to 1,034p and 5.8p to 382.4p respectively, as resources stocks benefit from strong Chinese economic data on the assumption that the Asian nation’s insatiable appetite for raw materials will continue.

Away from the top tier, online betting company Jackpotjoy was up 8p to 817p after calling time on its chief executive just nine months after floating on the London Stock Exchange.

Jackpotjoy's share price since floating on January 25 (PA)

The online betting firm said CEO Andy McIver would step down at the end of January, with a rebooted management team taking charge of its growth strategy.

The move will see chairman Neil Goulden become executive chairman, while Simon Wykes will join as group managing director from November 1.

It came as the company updated on its performance, with “strong trading” in the first half of the year carrying through into the third quarter.

Scottish housebuilder Springfield Properties kick-started trading on the alternative investment market (AIM), raising £25 million through the placing of 23,584,906 new shares at a price of 106p per share.

Shares in the firm closed up 9.9% or 10.5p to 116.5p.

The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 Index were Standard Life Aberdeen up 9.1p to 446.3p, Shire up 72.5p to 3,920.5p, Antofagasta up 19p to 1,034p, Glencore up 5.8p to 382.4p.

The biggest fallers were Convatec Group down 74.3p to 205p, GKN down 10.9p to 307.1p, Bunzl down 66p to 2,218, Reckitt Benckiser down 167p to 7,020p.

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