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Builders turn FTSE red as Thomas Cook keeps crashing

House builders weigh on FTSE 100 on disappointing Rightmove data while fresh tumble in Thomas Cook shares takes fall since Thursday to 57%.

Builders turn FTSE red as Thomas Cook keeps crashing

Update: The FTSE 100 has fallen into the red, dragged down by house builders after disappointing property price data from Rightmove.

The UK blue-chip index fell 34 points, or 0.5%, to 7,314, with builders among the fallers after Rightmove reported a 2.5% fall in Greater London property prices in the year to May.

Barratt Developments (BDEV) fell 4.3% to 587.2p, Taylor Wimpey (TW) was down 3.1% at 172p, Persimmon (PSN) dropped 2.8% to £20.58 and Berkeley (BKGH) traded 2.8% lower at £36.75.

TUI (TUIT) was the heaviest faller on the index, down 6.4% at 775.2p, hurt by the freefall in the shares of embattled rival Thomas Cook (TCG), down by a further 16.2% at 9.9p today.

Shares in Thomas Cook have crashed 57% over the last three days after Thursday's profit warning was followed by a downgrade on Friday from analysts at Citigroup, who said the shares were worthless.

Coca Cola HBC (CCH) was also in the red, down 6% at £26.91, as the bottling company was hurt by the news that Coca-Cola (KO.N) had dropped its plans to refranchise its Africa bottling business. Coca Cola HBG had been seen as a potential buyer of the division.

(9:59) Ryanair slumps on falling profits

The FTSE 100 has edged between gains and losses after a rise in the price of Brent crude lifted oil stocks but airline companies were led lower by Ryanair's (RYA.I) slump.

The UK blue-chip index fell two points to 7,347, with EasyJet (EZJ) and British Airways owner International Airlines Group (ICAG) among the fallers, down 2.4% at £10 and 1.3% lower at 502.2p respectively.

They were knocked by a slump in the shares of Ryanair, down 5.6% at  €10.24 after profits slumped to a four-year low and the budget airline group warned earnings could fall further.

'With full-year profit at the lower end of reduced guidance from January and a gloomy outlook it is little wonder budget airline Ryanair is in a tailspin,' said Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell.

'Times are tough for the travel industry. Brexit is affecting consumer sentiment appetite for travel and the operating environment for the airlines themselves.'

Airline stocks came under more pressure from the oil price, which rose 0.5% to $72.60 a barrel after the Opec cartel of oil-producing nations indicated it was likely to maintain production cuts.

That helped support the shares of oil majors Shell (RDSb) and BP (BP), up 8p at £25.50 and 4p at 559.9p respectively.

On the FTSE 250, Merlin Entertainments (MERL) was a heavy faller, down 5.3% to 355.1p after analysts at HSBC cut their rating on the amusement parks operator from 'buy' to 'reduce'.

Shares in 'small-cap' stock Low & Bonar (LWB) meanwhile lost a quarter of their value, crashing 24.8% to 10.9p after chief executive Philip de Klerk announced his departure following the polymer products maker's second profit warning in two months.

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