The FTSE 100 closed down 0.49% on Wednesday, as a 10-year high in U.K. inflation sends jitters through the market. U.K. data saw inflation rise across consumer, producer and retail price indexes, highlighting how widespread price pressures have become, IG Group PLC senior market analyst Joshua Mahony says. Coming off the back of a 14-month low in unemployment, the inflation high builds a renewed story around the Bank of England's potential actions, Mr. Mahony says. "Despite [BoE Governor Andrew] Bailey & co. failing to pull the trigger this month, we find ourselves back in the same position with markets now pricing a 60% chance of a December rate hike," Mr. Mahony says.
Skillcast Group to List on London's AIM in December
Skillcast Group PLC said Wednesday that it plans to list on London's junior AIM in early December.
East Imperial Receives Requisition to Hold Extraordinary AGM to Remove Chairman from Board
East Imperial PLC said Wednesday that Taylor Partners Ltd. is requisitioning an extraordinary general meeting, to be held within 21 days to propose the removal from the board of the chairman of the company.
Cornerstone Starts Procedure to Recover GBP100,000 Loan
Cornerstone FS PLC said Wednesday that it has started proceedings to recover funds under a 100,000 pounds ($134,290) loan facility previously agreed with Robert Lee.
Superdielectrics Group Targets GBP20 Mln in London IPO
Superdielectrics Group PLC said Wednesday that it intends to raise up to 20 million pounds ($26.9 million) and float on London's junior AIM next month.
Stranger Holdings Signs Agreement to Buy South African Uranium Project
Stranger Holdings PLC said Wednesday that it has signed a preliminary agreement to buy a company with a near-term uranium project in South Africa.
Health Platform Provider 4GLOBAL to Float in London in December
4GLOBAL PLC said Wednesday that it expects to float in London in early December.
Workspace Buys London Site for GBP45 Mln
Workspace Group PLC said Wednesday that it has acquired the Busworks property in Islington, London, for 45 million pounds ($60.4 million).
Life Science REIT Raises GBP350 Mln in AIM IPO; Trading Expected to Start Friday
Life Science REIT PLC said Wednesday that it has raised 350 million pounds ($470 million) as part of its initial public offering on the London Stock Exchange's junior AIM.
Kingswood Holdings to Buy Smythe and Walter for Up to GBP840,000
Kingswood Holdings Ltd. said Wednesday that it is buying the business assets of financial-planning company Smythe and Walter Ltd. for up to 840,000 pounds ($1.1 million).
Caledonia Investments Sells Interest in BioAgilytix to Cinven
Caledonia Investments PLC said Wednesday that international private equity firm Cinven Group Ltd. has bought its interest in the bioanalytical lab BioAgilytix Labs, LLC.
Golden Rock Global to Buy Bolt Global; Conduct Fundraising
Golden Rock Global PLC said Wednesday that it has signed a preliminary agreement to buy Bolt Global Ltd., and that it intends to undertake a fundraising for working-capital purposes.
Technology Minerals Shares Rise in Stock Market Debut
Shares of Technology Minerals PLC rose 41% in early trade Wednesday as the company started trading on the London Stock Exchange, implying a market capitalization of 38.6 million pounds ($51.8 million).
Zytronic Nonexecutive Chair Tudor Davies to Step Down in February
Zytronic PLC said Wednesday that Nonexecutive Chair Tudor Davies plans to step down from his role in February after more than 10 years in the role.
SSE Plans Stake Sales, Dividend Cut to Fund GBP12.5B Investment Plan; Shares Fall -- Update
Shares in SSE PLC fell Wednesday morning after the company unveiled plans to cut the dividend and sell stakes in its electricity network divisions to speed up investment on energy infrastructure through fiscal 2026.
SSE's 1H Results Show Why It Is Resisting Spinoff of Power Networks
1105 GMT - SSE has reported plans to sell a 25% stake in both its power network businesses, but this is unlikely to get Elliott Management off its back, Russ Mould from AJ Bell says. The activist investor, which joined SSE's shareholder register earlier this year, has been reportedly pushing for the energy company to separate the renewable assets from the grid business. However, SSE's results for the six months ended Sept. 30 show why the company is resisting such a move, Mould says. "Renewable output dropped sharply due to unfavorable weather conditions--essentially it just wasn't windy enough--but the company benefited from higher volumes through its regulated networks division," he says.
British Land's 1H Boosted by Higher Valuations, Growing Portfolio
1039 GMT - British Land delivered a respectable 6.1% accounting return in the first half, driven by valuation increases and a growing portfolio, Peel Hunt says. The real-estate company's new pre-let at 1 Broadgate is a sign of the continued flight to quality in offices, and British Land should be expected to be a continued beneficiary of this, the brokerage says. "A 4% EPRA net tangible asset upgrade, and a 10% dividend increase are welcome, and warrant an upgrade in our recommendation," Peel Hunt says. The brokerage raises its rating to add from hold and upgrades its target price to 580 pence, from 500 pence. Shares are flat on 533.4 pence.
British Land's Retail Exposure Still Weighs on It
0951 GMT - British Land is likely to find it difficult to reduce its exposure to retail property on attractive terms, RBC Capital Markets says. The real-estate company's investors should expect the downward pressure on its rental income from retail--which make up an estimated 57% of British Land's overall rents--to continue, the Canadian bank says. "While British Land continues to have success with its London office campus strategy, we believe that the outlook for development profit margins is challenging," RBC says, though it notes British Land performs well from an ESG perspective. RBC retains its sector perform rating and price target of 465.0 pence. Shares are up 0.1% at 534.0 pence.
Spirax-Sarco Drops After Flagging Possible Currency Hit
0950 GMT - Spirax-Sarco Engineering shares top the FTSE 100 fallers, down 5.8% after the steam-systems group said exchange rates could hit its full-year sales and profit by close to 4%. RBC Capital Markets said the update for the four months to October appeared in line with expectations, though it highlighted supply-chain disruption facing the company. With the shares up 17% since early October and at new all-time highs, they look expensive for an 'in-line' performer, RBC says. "Spirax is a high-quality business, in our view, but our underperform rating reflects its absolute and relative valuation, which appears challenging," RBC analyst Mark Fielding says.
British Land's 1H Results Bring Upbeat Momentum
0942 GMT - British Land's first-half results see a welcome return to capital growth with portfolio values up 2.4%, and confirm the positive momentum developing across in London office market, Goodbody says. The real-estate company's update highlights the clear stabilization in values that is emerging for prime retail, the Irish brokerage says. "Meanwhile, British Land's strategic shift towards a campus office and retail & fulfillment assets moves forward with increasing clarity of investment objectives, as funds are deployed, and legacy assets recycled," Goodbody says. Goodbody retains its hold recommendation on the stock. Shares are up 0.1% at 534.0 pence.
Glencore's Noncore Mine Sales May Improve Shareholder Returns
0922 GMT - Ernest Henry is a tail asset for Glencore and the reinvestment that will be required to extend the mine life is likely better allocated to its opportunities at longer-life and lower-cost South American and African assets, Tyler Broda from RBC Capital Markets says after the company agreed to sell its 70% stake in the mine for $730.3 million. The analyst says a sale of the Cobar mine in Australia would also fall under this tail asset divestment program in the coming months. "We highlight these monetisations are also likely to enhance potential shareholder returns, especially considering Glencore's current high free cash generation," Broda says. Shares rise 1.5%.
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