London open: Stocks edge up as investors cheer BP, StanChart earnings
London stocks rose in early trade on Tuesday, helped along by well-received earnings from the likes of BP and Standard Chartered.
At 0855 BST, the FTSE 100 was up 0.4% at 7,109.04.
BP was the standout performer on the FTSE 100 after the oil giant said it expected to buy back about $1bn of shares each quarter and increase its dividend over the next five years as it swung to a second-quarter profit.
Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: "BP isn’t quite throwing caution to the wind, but the company’s steady as she goes approach has been infused with optimism as higher oil prices make immediate prospects look brighter.
"With profits for the quarter coming in at $3.1 billion, the company is splashing surplus cash piled up through an annual increase in the dividend by 4% through to 2025 and $1.4 billion in share buy backs."
Standard Chartered was also on the rise after it reported an increase in first-half profits and said it was resuming dividends against an improving economic backdrop.
Precious metals miner Fresnillo shone as it announced a jump in its interim dividend and reported earnings up 59% in the first half, supported by higher prices.
Insurer Hiscox advanced after saying it swung to an interim profit as gross premiums written rose across its divisions.
Domino’s Pizza rallied as it posted a 28% jump in first-half underlying pre-tax profit and expanded its share buyback.
Direct Line was also in the black as it reported higher interim earnings on the back of lower motor claims as the pandemic kept drivers off roads during lockdowns.
On the downside, Smiths Group was the worst performer on the top-flight index after announcing late on Monday that it had agreed to sell its medical unit to TA Associates for $2.3bn.
Rotork slumped after it announced plans for chief executive Kevin Hostetler to leave the company as the industrial instruments maker posted a 2.4% profit increase for the first half.
TP ICAP declined after it said revenues dipped in the first half amid quieter markets.
Travis Perkins fell even as the builders' merchant lifted full-year guidance and said it would pay a special dividend as it returned to profit after a recovery in its repairs, maintenance and improvement markets.
FTSE 100 - Risers
BP (BP.) 296.80p 2.43%
NATWEST GROUP PLC ORD 100P (NWG) 208.70p 2.05%
Standard Chartered (STAN) 445.50p 2.02%
Fresnillo (FRES) 838.60p 1.92%
Rightmove (RMV) 729.80p 1.50%
Anglo American (AAL) 3,345.50p 1.38%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,539.50p 1.25%
Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) 288.70p 1.23%
Croda International (CRDA) 8,588.00p 1.11%
BT Group (BT.A) 176.55p 1.06%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Smiths Group (SMIN) 1,479.50p -5.88%
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,707.00p -1.44%
Intermediate Capital Group (ICP) 2,170.00p -1.09%
Avast (AVST) 582.60p -0.95%
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 916.60p -0.69%
Next (NXT) 7,918.00p -0.68%
Kingfisher (KGF) 367.90p -0.67%
Sage Group (SGE) 709.20p -0.62%
Ashtead Group (AHT) 5,336.00p -0.60%
Melrose Industries (MRO) 167.40p -0.59%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Domino's Pizza Group (DOM) 440.20p 4.36%
Indivior (INDV) 171.20p 3.76%
Hiscox Limited (DI) (HSX) 894.20p 3.30%
Babcock International Group (BAB) 270.70p 2.81%
Morgan Sindall Group (MGNS) 2,465.00p 2.49%
Direct Line Insurance Group (DLG) 306.80p 2.44%
XP Power Ltd. (DI) (XPP) 5,150.00p 2.18%
Drax Group (DRX) 407.00p 1.90%
CLS Holdings (CLI) 252.50p 1.81%
Spire Healthcare Group (SPI) 226.00p 1.80%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Rotork (ROR) 339.20p -6.50%
TP Icap Group (TCAP) 192.00p -4.00%
Travis Perkins (TPK) 1,681.50p -2.30%
Templeton Emerging Markets Inv Trust (TEM) 183.10p -1.40%
Genesis Emerging Markets Fund Ltd Ptg NPV (GSS) 872.00p -1.36%
Fidelity China Special Situations (FCSS) 359.00p -1.10%
Vietnam Enterprise Investments (DI) (VEIL) 670.00p -1.03%
Dr. Martens (DOCS) 428.00p -0.93%
Premier Foods (PFD) 108.00p -0.92%
Primary Health Properties (PHP) 164.00p -0.91%