The FTSE 100 closed down 0.7% despite the short-lived boost stocks enjoyed after the Bank of England voted to keep its key interest rate unchanged at 5.25%, ending a run of 14 consecutive rises. The index is feeling pressure from the U.S. where the Federal Reserve has signaled rates will remain high for longer in 2024. "'Higher for longer' is the theme from all central banks at the moment, but it is the Fed that has really spelled doom for risk appetite," IG analyst Chris Beauchamp says in a note. Ocado was the session's biggest faller, down 20%, followed by Flutter, down 3.5% and Croda International, down 3.5%.


Halma Backs FY 2024 Views; Sees Revenue Growth in 1H

Halma backed its guidance for fiscal 2024 and expects to report good organic revenue growth for the first half despite varied market conditions as well as return on sales toward the lower end of its targeted range.


JD Sports' Raises Dividend After Pretax Profit Beat Market Views

JD Sports Fashion said pretax profit rose in the first half of its fiscal year due to gains from divestments and strong sales, and it increased its interim dividend payout.


Next PLC Raises Full-Year Views as 1H Pretax Profit Rose

Next PLC raised its full-year guidance as first-half pretax profit rose on better-than-expected sales, significantly improved online service and lower-than-expected costs.


City Pub Group Swung to First-Half Pretax Loss; Sees Strong 2H

City Pub Group said that it is performing in line with full-year expectations as it sees momentum continuing into its seasonally busier second half, after it reported a swing to a pretax loss in the first half of 2023.


SSP Group Sees Revenue, Ebitda at Top End of Range, Citing Strong Performance to Date

SSP Group expects to report revenue and underlying pre-IFRS 16 Ebitda for fiscal 2023 at the top end of guidance ranges, citing a strong performance in the year to date that was boosted by a recovery in passenger numbers at airports.


DFS Furniture Says Low Consumer Demand to Continue Weighing on Profit

DFS Furniture said pretax profit for fiscal 2023 dropped on challenging economic backdrop and low consumer demand, which should continue in the current financial year.


Mercia Asset Management Has Seen Positive Start to FY 2024

Mercia Asset Management has had a positive start to the current fiscal year and is optimistic that it will see continued progress over the second half, it said Thursday.


Firering Strategic Minerals Raises GBP756,000, More Than Planned

Firering Strategic Minerals has raised 756,000 pounds ($933,206) via the share placing first announced late Wednesday, more than planned.


CVS Group Revenue, Profit Rise on Robust Demand for Pet Services

CVS Group posted a rise in revenue and pretax profit for fiscal 2023 as demand for its clinical care services for pets continues to be robust.


Trakm8 Backs Full-Year Revenue View

Trakm8 backed its fiscal-year guidance after performance in the first five months has started in line with its expectations, the U.K. telematics and data-insight provider said Thursday.


Emmerson Investors Confirm Intent to Replace Line-of-Credit; Confident in Approval

Emmerson said it remains confident in a favorable outcome for its environmental permit and that its strategic investors have confirmed their intent to replace its existing line-of-credit with more suitable financing support.


Aquis Exchange Profit Rose on Revenue Growth in All Divisions

Aquis Exchange posted a rise in revenue and profit for the first half of 2023 and said trading for the full year remains in line with the board's expectations.


Strix Group Shares Dive on Dividend Cut, Profit Fall

Shares of Strix Group fell 30% on Thursday after the company cut its dividend for the first half-year as it focuses on reducing debt and as it reported a fall in pretax profit on higher costs.


James Fisher Swings to Loss on One-Off Costs; Revenue Rose

James Fisher & Sons said it swung to a pretax loss on one-off costs, though underlying profit and revenue rose and early second-half performance was in line with its expectations.


Real Good Food Revenue Falls on Tough Market Conditions in US, Europe

Real Good Food said its pretax loss narrowed in fiscal 2023 despite revenue decreasing on macroeconomic headwinds, particularly in the U.S. and Europe.


Van Elle Backs Full-Year View After Performing in Line Expectations in First Four Months

Van Elle backed its full-year guidance after its financial performance came in line with the board's expectations in the first four months of fiscal 2024, the U.K. engineering contractor said Thursday.


Manx Financial Shares Rise After Rates Boosted Profit

Manx Financial Group shares rose on Thursday after the company reported higher pretax profit for the first half of 2023 on the back of higher interest rates and said it should be well positioned for a strong finish to the year and the start of the next.


Chesnara Swings to Pretax Profit on Insurance, Positive Investment Returns

Chesnara posted a swing to pretax profit for the first half of 2023 on insurance profits and positive investment returns.


Corero Network Security Pretax Loss Widens on Higher Costs

Corero Network Security has reported a much widened pretax loss for the first half year after booking higher costs and said that it expects to meet full-year market expectations.


Ferrexpo Ukrainian Subsidiaries Hit by Legal Restrictions on Transfer of Shares

Ferrexpo said two Ukrainian subsidiaries, Ferrexpo Yeristovo Mining and Ferrexpo Belanovo Mining, have received documents from Ukraine's Ministry of Justice placing restrictions on the transfer of shares.


4basebio 1H Loss Widened on Higher Costs, R&D Expenses

4basebio reported a widened net loss for the first half of 2023 due to higher administrative costs and research and development expenses, and despite significant revenue growth which is expected to continue for the year.


Harvest Minerals Shares Drop as Lower Fertilizer Demand Weighs on Profit

Harvest Minerals' shares fell on Thursday after the group said its pretax loss for the first half widened as business suffered from lower demand for its fertilizers and reduced pricing.


Kooth Pretax Loss Widens on Higher Costs, Despite US Revenue Boost

Kooth has reported a widened pretax loss for the first half year after booking higher costs and despite revenue growing and on the back of its international expansion strategy focused on the U.S. market.


CT Automotive Shares Rise on Swing to Profit as Margins Improve, Revenue Grows

Shares of CT Automotive Group rose 14% on Thursday after the company reported a swing to pretax profit for the first half-year as margins improved and revenue grew, and said it expects to meet the board's full-year expectations.


Neometals' Battery-Recycling Patent Adds to Investment Case, RBC Says

1253 GMT - Neometals' patent for its lithium-ion battery recycling is an encouraging step, and will allow the company operating freedom, while reinforcing a leading technological offer to original equipment manufacturers, RBC Capital Markets analyst Tyler Broda writes in a research note. Scale, operating know-how and access to battery feedstock will be key over the medium-term, as the technology likely becomes more ubiquitous, Broda says. The patent is for the miner's joint venture Primobius and a first for its lithium-ion battery recycling technology. "We expect rapid and accelerating growth in the battery recycling space and see Primobius/Neometals as well positioned to take part in this burgeoning industry." RBC rates the stock outperform. Shares are up 6.8% at 23.50 pence. (


Bank of England Could Be Just Pausing Before Tightening Further

0843 ET - The Bank of England has held rates as it adopts a wait-and-see approach to inflation, but Thursday's decision is likely just a pause, rather than an end, of the tightening cycle, Shweta Singh, chief economist at Cardano says in a note. Even if inflation is now tamed, wages continue to grow at a brisk rate and well above the level consistent with the 2% inflation target, while underlying inflation pressures remain sticky and are likely to stay elevated over the next twelve months, Singh adds. "We still expect one more interest rate hike and further expect that U.K. monetary policy will have to remain in restrictive territory for some time before cuts could be considered." (

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

09-21-23 1250ET