The FTSE 100 closed Monday up 0.27% as what could have been a positive start to the week instead saw a muted reaction to China's reopening news and U.S. economic data. Stock markets seem distinctly underwhelmed by China's all-too tentative moves toward reopening its economy, and instead have gone back to worrying about the Fed, IG Group PLC chief market analyst Chris Beauchamp said in a note. "Friday's jobs report continues to loom over markets, causing further losses as some dovish bets are pared back. While the pre-meeting blackout means we might be spared any Fed comments, it seems stocks will continue to trade in a negative fashion, at least until the meeting itself," Beauchamp said.

Companies News: 

Vodafone CEO Nick Read Steps Down; CFO Named as Interim

Vodafone Group PLC said Monday that Nick Read has agreed to step down as chief executive and that current Chief Financial Officer Margherita Della Valle has been appointed as interim chief executive.


Wentworth Resources Agrees to GBP61.7M Takeover by Etablissements Maurel Et Prom

Wentworth Resources PLC said Monday that it has agreed to a 61.7 million pound ($75.9 million) cash takeover from Etablissements Maurel et Prom S.A.


Avon Protection to Sell Lexington Facility Assets for 'Modest' Sum

Avon Protection PLC said Monday that it is selling the assets of its Lexington facility in the U.S. for "a modest cash consideration" to advanced ceramics-materials manufacturer CoorsTek Inc.


Keywords Studios to Buy Helpshift for Up to $75 Mln

Keywords Studios PLC said Monday that it has agreed to buy Helpshift, Inc. for up to $75 million to expand its player support and engagement capability.


Condor Gold Seeking to Raise up to GBP4.0 Mln via Open Offer

Condor Gold PLC said Monday that it is seeking to raise up to 4.0 million pounds ($4.9 million) via an open offer to shareholders, as first flagged last week.


RBG Holdings Sees Adjusted Ebitda Behind Views After LionFish Losses

RBG Holdings PLC said Monday that it now expects adjusted Ebitda to be materially behind market consensus expectations for 2022 after losses at its litigation finance subsidiary LionFish.


A.G. Barr Buys Boost Drinks for Up to GBP32 Mln

A.G. Barr PLC said Monday that it has bought beverage group Boost Drinks Holdings Ltd. for up to 32 million pounds ($39.3 million).


Equals Group Expects to Beat 2022 Market Views

Equals Group PLC on Monday said it expects its full-year result to come ahead of current market expectations, boosted by an increase in revenue.


National Express Appoints James Stamp as Permanent CFO

National Express Group PLC said Monday that it has appointed James Stamp as group chief financial officer with immediate effect, having held the role on an interim basis since Nov. 1.


Bigblu Broadband Buys Australia Satellite Operations for A$5.2 Mln

Bigblu Broadband PLC said Monday that it bought the satellite operations of a subsidiary of Uniti Group Ltd. in Australia for up to 5.2 million Australian dollars ($3.5 million).


Pod Point Appoints David Wolffe as CFO

Pod Point Group Holdings PLC said Monday that Chief Financial Officer-Designate David Wolffe has been appointed as chief financial officer, effective Jan. 3.

Market Talk: 

Luxury Set to Feel the Chill as Macro Pressures Weigh on Demand

1153 GMT - The luxury-goods industry is set for a slower end to the year as macroeconomic challenges mount and comparison bases toughen, analysts at HSBC write in a note. The sector should average 8% organic sales growth in 4Q on year, slowing from 16% the previous quarter, according to HSBC's forecasts. More and more countries are facing economic issues, and the comparison bases in the final quarter are harder, the analysts note, adding that the slowdown should continue into 1H 2023. The bank cuts its rating on U.K. luxury-fashion firm Burberry to reduce from hold, and on Watches of Switzerland to hold from buy. "Luxury could be the last shoe to drop, but we think it will indeed end up dropping," the analysts say. (; @joshualeokirby)

BOE Likely to Raise Rates By 50Bps Next Week

1139 GMT - The Bank of England is expected to slow the pace of rate increases to 50 basis points at its meeting next week, from 75 basis points in November as medium-term inflation expectations and labor demand show signs of easing, say UBS analysts in a note. "Absent of major surprises in the December labor market report and November CPI, we expect the majority of the Monetary Policy Committee to vote in favour of a smaller rate increase," the analysts say. In addition, there is a lag in the transmission of the Monetary Policy Committee decisions, therefore "most of the impact of the hikes already delivered is still yet to come," they say. The BOE's rate decision is on Dec. 15. (

Savills Faces Tougher Times Amid Transaction Pressure

1119 GMT - Savills is facing tougher times, Peel Hunt says, downgrading the real-estate agent to add from buy. Savills continues to look like a high-quality business with attractive long-term growth prospects, Peel says, adding that property market activity is likely to normalize over the next couple of years, allowing Savills to resume longer-term growth. However, transaction activity is under pressure, particularly in commercial markets, as yields and values adjust to changed interest-rate expectations, the brokerage says. "The current market softness and FY23 outlook see us cut our target price from1275 pence to 1000p and we downgrade our recommendation from buy to add," Peel Hunt analysts say in a note. Shares fall 9% to 859p. (

Glencore's Investor Day to Be Scoured for Positive Comments

1056 GMT - Glencore is expected to provide strategic updates, discuss current Ebitda and free cash flow run rates and its capital returns outlook at its annual investor day on Tuesday, Jefferies says. "Production guidance for 2022-2025 may disappoint, but this should be more than offset by positive comments regarding marketing, cash flows and capital returns," the U.S. bank says. The commodity mining and trading company's shares trade at a discount compared to peers, and its value has derated over recent years--possibly due to its exposure to thermal coal, which is near peak pricing, but also likely a fundamental undervaluing of the company, Jefferies analysts say in a research note. Jefferies reiterates its buy rating and 700 pence price target on Glencore's stock. Shares are up 2.1% at 570.0 pence. (

BOE Could Further Delay Sales of Long-Dated Gilts Under APF

1035 GMT - Barclays expects the Bank of England will again delay the sale of gilts with maturies of over 20 years from the Asset Purchase Facility until it has sold more of its holdings from its temporary gilt-purchase portfolio, says Barclays fixed income strategist Moyeen Islam in a note. "That way, the Bank avoids the accusation of being a source of market disruption by selling bonds into the market from the APF when there is limited appetite for longs apparent from its reverse inquiry-driven sales," says Islam. The bank shelved the sale of long-maturity gilts in 4Q 2022, only selling gilts with a maturity of 20 years or under from the Asset Purchase Facility. (

Bellway Shares Look Cheap Given Value on Offer

1019 GMT - Bellway now has one of the cheapest shares for value on offer of the U.K. house builders, Jefferies says. The house builder sits in the middle of the road in many sector aspects--like proportion of first-time buyers and geographical mix--and previously we saw Bellway as un-differentiated compared to peers, Jefferies analysts say in a research note. "However, staring into a downturn, it has... unrivalled house-building experience, and its land buying through the last two years positions it not just to better manage its cash near term but also to grow into market improvements when they are seen," the U.S. bank says. Jefferies raises its stock rating to buy from hold, with a price target of 2458 pence, from 1,918 pence. Shares are up 2.4% at 1,991.0 pence. (

Contact: London NewsPlus;

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

12-05-22 1154ET