London midday: Stocks maintain gains on China hopes
London stocks were still firmly in the black by midday on Tuesday amid hopes China will ease Covid restrictions.
The FTSE 100 was up 0.9% at 7,537.33.
Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said: "The FTSE 100 bounced back on Tuesday as the same oil and mining stocks which had driven the index lower yesterday recovered on hopes for an easing of China’s strict zero-Covid policy.
"Oil prices were also being lifted by chatter around OPEC production cuts. The widespread protests across China against Covid restrictions seem to have drawn a carrot and stick response from the government. Police have been out in force to prevent further civil disobedience while news the country plans to ramp up booster shots for the elderly hint at a more pragmatic response to the pandemic.
"However, China has largely been reliant on less effective domestic vaccines and rates of vaccination are still a long way behind those in the West, while more successful containment of the virus means there is less natural immunity than in other parts of the world.
"As the shutdown at several car manufacturing sites across China shows, all the disruption is only likely to add to global supply chain woes."
In equity markets, Asia-focused Prudential and Standard Chartered both jumped following strong gains in Chinese equity markets.
HSBC shot higher after agreeing to sell its Canadian business to Royal Bank of Canada in a $13.5bn cash deal.
Miners - which are heavily dependent on demand from China - also gained, with Rio, Anglo American, Glencore and Antofagasta all up.
West End landlord Shaftesbury advanced after saying it swung to a full-year profit as it returned to pre-pandemic occupancy.
Budget airline easyJet flew lower even as it said it narrowed full-year losses and that it was ramping up preparations for next summer as travellers looked for value for money during the cost-of-living crisis.
Energy industry engineering and consulting business Wood Group tumbled even as it held full-year guidance and said trading in the first 10 months of the year was in line with expectations.
In broker note action, Admiral and Direct Line were knocked lower by downgrades to ‘hold’ and ‘reduce’ respectively at HSBC, while Sage was weaker after an initiation at ‘sell’ by Goodbody. IMI was down after a cut to ‘sell’ at UBS, but Rotork rose after an upgrade to ‘buy’ by the same outfit.
FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,537.33 0.85%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 19,309.56 0.09%
techMARK (TASX) 4,410.83 -0.33%
FTSE 100 - Risers
Prudential (PRU) 971.20p 4.61%
HSBC Holdings (HSBA) 508.90p 4.15%
Standard Chartered (STAN) 603.00p 4.00%
Rio Tinto (RIO) 5,540.00p 3.30%
Anglo American (AAL) 3,275.00p 3.20%
Airtel Africa (AAF) 123.50p 2.24%
Frasers Group (FRAS) 913.00p 2.13%
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 126.95p 1.97%
Melrose Industries (MRO) 132.30p 1.81%
Harbour Energy (HBR) 316.50p 1.77%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Halma (HLMA) 2,204.00p -2.95%
Croda International (CRDA) 6,766.00p -2.00%
Severn Trent (SVT) 2,734.00p -1.55%
United Utilities Group (UU.) 1,034.50p -1.52%
Sage Group (SGE) 804.00p -1.47%
Experian (EXPN) 2,906.00p -1.36%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 625.60p -1.29%
Entain (ENT) 1,381.00p -1.15%
Dechra Pharmaceuticals (DPH) 2,710.00p -1.02%
Pershing Square Holdings Ltd NPV (PSH) 2,925.00p -1.02%
FTSE 250 - Risers
VinaCapital Vietnam Opportunity Fund Ltd. (VOF) 435.00p 3.08%
Sirius Real Estate Ltd. (SRE) 84.30p 2.93%
Liontrust Asset Management (LIO) 1,146.00p 2.87%
Fidelity China Special Situations (FCSS) 216.00p 2.86%
Jupiter Fund Management (JUP) 129.20p 2.22%
Rotork (ROR) 296.40p 2.14%
Templeton Emerging Markets Inv Trust (TEM) 144.60p 2.12%
Britvic (BVIC) 820.50p 2.05%
C&C Group (CDI) (CCR) 182.00p 2.02%
Vietnam Enterprise Investments (DI) (VEIL) 574.00p 1.95%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Wood Group (John) (WG.) 140.75p -11.70%
TI Fluid Systems (TIFS) 123.60p -6.22%
Renishaw (RSW) 3,794.00p -5.01%
easyJet (EZJ) 375.20p -4.53%
Petrofac Ltd. (PFC) 89.55p -4.17%
IMI (IMI) 1,381.00p -3.02%
Centamin (DI) (CEY) 103.90p -2.30%
Pennon Group (PNN) 944.50p -2.23%
Darktrace (DARK) 351.30p -1.95%
Octopus Renewables Infrastructure Trust (ORIT) 101.80p -1.93%