LONDON (SHARECAST) - Hammerson, the property company that has spent much of the year selling off its offices, rose on news that it continues to recycle the cash into shopping centres with the acquisition The Junction Unit Trust.
The group has paid £254.5m for the trust, which owns four prominent retail parks in strong catchment areas.
Shares in luxury fashion group Burberry were registering gains on Friday morning in London after Investec returned to its bullish stance on the stock and upgraded its rating from 'hold' to 'buy'. The broker said that the highlights of last week's first-half pre-close trading update were "a modest improvement in all three major regions at the end of the period" and a continued elevation in the 'luxury' nature of product sales.
Meanwhile, the market reaction to Aggreko's third-quarter trading update on Friday was far from positive, but analysts on the whole have retained their upbeat long-term stances on the stock with the majority recommending investors to 'buy on weakness'.
Distribution and outsourcing group Bunzl was also a heavy faller after the third quarter saw a moderation in the underlying revenue growth rate, particularly in North America, where the company is going up against tough comparatives. Oriel Securities cut its view on the stock to 'hold' this morning.
Banking stocks were also hit today after last night's revelation about a further £700m in PPI provisions that Barclays has put aside. Nomura said that the bank faces several potential negative catalysts, such as: "potential cleanup costs with the arrival of a new CEO, potential to mark level 3/similar assets more conservatively, take more aggressive restructuring measure (provisions-wise) due to external pressure, challenges from forth coming regulation and a rethink around the capital position of the group."
Lloyds was out of favour after being weighed down by a ratings cut from JPMorgan Cazenove to 'underweight'.
It was also announced that Barclays is planning on cutting jobs at its Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) equities division in an effort to scale back costs. Around a tenth of the employees at the EMEA equites unit, which employs over 500 people, are at risk of losing their jobs, according to Bloomberg on Friday afternoon.
Miners were also taking a hit as concerns about metal demand in China continue to weigh heavy. The country's Commerce Ministry said the latest trade figures were not sufficient to confirm that a recovery is on the cards for the key base metals sector.
As a result, investors sought the more typically 'safe' stocks, such as United Utilities.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Johnson Matthey (JMAT) 2,337.00p +2.19%
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 753.50p +1.48%
Hammerson (HMSO) 482.80p +1.41%
Wood Group (John) (WG.) 877.00p +1.39%
Reckitt Benckiser Group (RB.) 3,707.00p +1.15%
Polymetal International (POLY) 1,168.00p +1.13%
Tate & Lyle (TATE) 719.00p +1.13%
United Utilities Group (UU.) 730.00p +1.11%
SABMiller (SAB) 2,625.00p +1.00%
Diageo (DGE) 1,770.00p +0.77%