London midday: Stocks push up as Shell, BP rally
London stocks had risen further by midday on Monday, underpinned by a strong showing in the energy sector.
The FTSE 100 was up 0.5% at 7,370.17.
Despite the upbeat tone, recession fears continued to play on investors’ minds after rate hikes last week by the US Federal Reserve, the Bank of England and the European Central Bank.
Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said: "Despite some weakness in Asian markets overnight, the FTSE 100 starts the last week before Christmas with a sprinkling of cheer as it looks to recover last week’s losses.
"What investors are wrestling with now is just how much economic pain central banks are willing to inflict with rate rises to drag inflation back to targeted levels.
"US releases on consumer confidence on Wednesday and core inflation on Friday look the only scheduled announcements likely to shift the market’s mood this week but after an unpredictable year it would be foolish to rule out one last big surprise before 2022 is out."
Market participants were mulling the latest data from retail consultancy Springboard, which revealed that retailers were set for a subdued Christmas as rail strikes and the cold weather deterred already hard-pressed shoppers.
Elsewhere, the Industrial Trends survey from the Confederation of British Industry showed that output in the manufacturing sector fell in December amid rising inflation.
The CBI’s total orders balance declined to -6 from -5 in November, although this was ahead of expectations for a reading of -9.
There wasn’t much in the way of corporate news as we head towards the Christmas break, but oil giants Shell and BP gushed higher as oil prices rose.
Hospital group Spire Healthcare was in focus as it announced the acquisition of The Doctors Clinic Group, an integrated provider of occupational health and private GP services, for £12m.
JD Sports lost ground after saying late on Friday that it had sold its interests in a number of fashion brands to Frasers Group for up to £47.5m.
Electricals retailer Currys was under the cosh after a downgrade to ‘hold’ at Investec.
FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,370.17 0.52%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 18,699.39 0.60%
techMARK (TASX) 4,351.16 0.23%
FTSE 100 - Risers
Fresnillo (FRES) 892.00p 4.40%
BP (BP.) 467.85p 2.73%
Shell (SHEL) 2,303.00p 2.67%
Beazley (BEZ) 650.50p 2.44%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 640.60p 1.75%
M&G (MNG) 183.00p 1.61%
Melrose Industries (MRO) 125.95p 1.53%
Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) 88.65p 1.51%
CRH (CDI) (CRH) 3,219.00p 1.50%
Smith (DS) (SMDS) 316.30p 1.48%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) 7,224.00p -1.58%
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 116.25p -1.57%
Auto Trader Group (AUTO) 530.20p -0.79%
Pershing Square Holdings Ltd NPV (PSH) 2,840.00p -0.70%
NATWEST GROUP (NWG) 257.20p -0.69%
Frasers Group (FRAS) 730.00p -0.68%
BT Group (BT.A) 112.20p -0.66%
Relx plc (REL) 2,291.00p -0.65%
Rentokil Initial (RTO) 514.80p -0.58%
Experian (EXPN) 2,845.00p -0.49%
FTSE 250 - Risers
FirstGroup (FGP) 103.00p 4.99%
Hammerson (HMSO) 23.66p 4.14%
Helios Towers (HTWS) 106.80p 3.39%
Tullow Oil (TLW) 36.10p 3.26%
IP Group (IPO) 57.90p 3.02%
ITV (ITV) 71.52p 3.00%
Synthomer (SYNT) 136.70p 2.78%
Apax Global Alpha Limited (APAX) 193.20p 2.77%
Hochschild Mining (HOC) 66.75p 2.69%
Sirius Real Estate Ltd. (SRE) 72.20p 2.56%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Dechra Pharmaceuticals (DPH) 2,646.00p -3.15%
Genus (GNS) 2,914.00p -2.08%
Fidelity China Special Situations (FCSS) 238.50p -1.85%
Barr (A.G.) (BAG) 531.00p -1.85%
Premier Foods (PFD) 107.40p -1.83%
Currys (CURY) 55.95p -1.67%
Urban Logistics Reit (SHED) 135.00p -1.46%
CMC Markets (CMCX) 222.00p -1.33%
Telecom Plus (TEP) 2,250.00p -1.10%
Ibstock (IBST) 146.90p -1.01%