The New York Fed’s Empire State manufacturing index – a key indicator of how economically confident New York state manufacturing companies are – slumped to 9.8 in July (19.8 in June). A far heavier drop than economists expected. Orders, inventories and number of employees all fell back. Read it in full here.
The news did little to prop up US shares. At close to 4pm the Dow was up just 0.01% at 21,640.26, just four points ahead. The pound drifted -0.36% down to $1.3062 (though still ahead almost 1.5% on the week). The euro traded -0.01% lower at $1.1470. Latest UK inflation numbers emerge tomorrow which will give a fresh kick to the pound.
In London the UK FTSE 100 ended up 25 points higher at 7,404.13 with Ashtead Group and Micro Focus Int both surging 3.4% while Imperial Brands and Experian both fell -1.3%.
- UK FTSE 100 7,404.13 +0.35%
- Dow 21,639.34 +0.01%
- S&P 500 2,461.20 +0.07%
- Nasdaq 6,319.26 +0.11%
- Nikkei 225 20,118.86 +0.09%
- DAX 12,570.85 -0.49%
- CAC 40 5,224.82 -0.20%
- Gold 1,233.60 +0.50%
- Oil WTI 46.51 -0.09%
Carillion crisis - will it deliver on HS2?
Considerable concern today for Carillion. The construction and facilities management operator last week saw its boss quit and its share price crash. However Carillion has been picked as a key player in the new HS2 project high speed rail link.
The BBC reported this afternoon that HS2 Ltd has sought assurances from Carillion that it could deliver the contract with key partners Eiffage and Kier.
“Each company's boards have both given that assurance and confirmed that they underwrite the performance of each other in delivering the contract. And that is the key point. HS2, of course, will continue to monitor the situation."
Carillion’s share price has surged more than 20% since this morning’s news of the HS2 contract to 68.50p but that is a long distance from almost 200p, the price Carillion was trading at on 7 July.
Puma sales kick higher
German sportswear maker Puma says full-year profits and sales should edge higher thanks to a robust second quarter. Puma anticipates sales should be up by 12-14% overall, despite currency gusts.
Similar to Adidas, Puma is surging on stronger US sales thanks in part to more retro-styled sports shoes. Puma thinks 2017 earnings could come in at close to €215m compared to the previous predicted top €200m figure.
Meanwhile key rival Nike has been resorting to some heavy discounting to shift product.
Breaking news: HS2 routes to Manchester and Leeds have been confirmed by the Department for Transport. More than 15 new homes on the Shimmer housing estate in Mexborough, Yorkshire will need to be demolished.
Primark has issued a recall on three versions of its Cedar Wood State men’s flipflops over a dangerous chemical warning. The footwear was on sale from the start of January to 2 June.