More concern about UK consumer confidence. Visa claims July saw a dip for the third month in a row, slumping by 0.8%. This 0.8% figure is substantially higher than the 0.2% slip seen in June. The spending clip is another sign of UK consumer surging prices versus largely lifeless wage growth. Last week Next reported a -7.4% sales drop for the last quarter. UK car sales also fell 9.3% in July.
The pound traded flat against the dollar overnight. Close to 7am this morning sterling was at $1.3054, up 0.07% while the euro was up by a similar amount at $1.1790. However the solid US jobs numbers on Friday helped boost dollar sentiment over the weekend; the pound remains down -1.20% on the week.
This morning, German industrial production numbers are out with Nomura saying it expects an 0.4% month-on-month in June after a strong rise in May.
- UK FTSE 100 7,474.77 +0.85%
- Dow 22,092.81 +0.30%
- S&P 500 2,476.83 +0.19%
- Nasdaq 6,351.56 +0.18%
- Nikkei 225 20,064 +0.56%
- DAX 12,154.72 -0.22%
- CAC 40 5,130.49 +0.46%
- Gold 1,263.30 -0.10%
- Oil WTI 49.44 -0.26%
Ultra Electronics profits slip
New numbers from Ultra Electronics this morning: revenues for the six months to 30 June are down -0.1% to £366.4m while underlying operating profit drops -0.2% to £57.6m from £57.7m. Underlying earnings per share come in 0.3% higher though Ultra has pumped up the interim dividend per share by 2.8% to 14.6p from 14.2p.
2017 will be more heavily weighted to the second half than normal and this is visible in the results says Ultra whose business spans aerospace, maritime and nuclear. Expectations for the year are unchanged. At 2,074p Ultra’s shares are up 20.5% for the last 12 months.
“Market conditions," says Ultra Electronoics, "remain largely unchanged since our preliminary announcement in March. The US Federal budget was not approved until May and this, together with the recent UK General Election, has affected the progress of some contract awards.”
Paddy Power boss quits
Paddy Power Betfair says boss Breon Corcoran will quit the company after a decade in the top job with new CEO Peter Jackson, a non-exec director of Paddy Power Betfair, taking the reins. Jackson was CEO of Travelex Group between 2010-2015 but most recently chief exec of WorldPay.
Paddy Power Betfair results emerge later this week. A UK government review of fixed-odds betting terminals is under way – the terminals are responsible for substantial shop profits – though it’s not clear when the results of the review will be published.
Meanwhile the Financial Conduct Authority is thought to be close to launching a fresh look at peer-to-peer lending in order to improve governance and trading platform ease.
In Asia it's understood South Korea is pushing for a 12-year prison term for Samsung vice chairman Jay Y Lee. He has been accused of bribing a colleague of ex-President Park Guen-hye.
Breaking news: Ex-president of the CBI Dame Helen Alexander has died. Alexander was a director at Rolls-Royce Group and Thomson-Reuters.