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Important information: The value of investments can go down as well as up so you may get back less than you invest. Investors should note that the views expressed may no longer be current and may have already been acted upon. This is a third-party news feed and may not reflect Fidelity’s views.

London open: FTSE nudges up as Rolls-Royce, Beazley surge

(Sharecast News) - London stocks nudged higher in early trade on Thursday as investors cheered solid results from US AI chipmaker Nvidia overnight and strong numbers from engine maker Rolls-Royce. At 0915 GMT, the FTSE 100 was up 0.1% at 7,672.00.

Derren Nathan, head of equity research at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: "Nvidia is cementing quite a reputation for setting exceptional growth targets and then beating them. Fourth quarter revenues reported after yesterday's close saw revenues more that treble to $22.1bn. Underlying earnings per share leap nearly six-fold to $5.16 with both metrics sailing past consensus forecasts.

"Nvidia's managing to deliver a staggering performance without overly extending the cost-base, testament to its design-led asset-light business model. Sales guidance for the current quarter of about $24bn has also eclipsed the street's expectations of $21.9bn. That's reassured the market with the shares up 9% in after-hours trading more than compensating for the jitters seen earlier in the week."

On home shores, Rolls-Royce jumped to the top of the FTSE 100 as it reported a more than doubling of its full-year profits, underpinned by its civil aerospace segment. Full-year 2023 underlying operating profit came in at £1.6bn, up from £652m a year earlier, with revenues rising to £15.4bn from £12.7bn. Analysts were expecting operating profit of £1.4bn.

Beazley rallied as it upgraded its guidance for the undiscounted combined ratio from low-80s to mid-70s for 2023 thanks to better-than-expected claims experience during the year. It also said that as well as an ordinary dividend, shareholders will receive an additional capital return for the year of around $300m.

Hikma Pharmaceuticals gained as it bumped up its dividend by almost a third following double-digit growth in full-year core revenues and profits in 2023.

Anglo American was up despite slashing its annual dividend by a half after seeing profits plunge in 2023 on the back of impairments and downturns in the platinum and diamond markets.

Mondi also advanced even as the paper and packaging firm reported lower full-year profits on the back of weaker demand and lower prices, with the latter continuing into the first quarter of 2024.

Indivior surged as the opioid addiction treatment maker said it was considering moving its primary listing to the US.

Jupiter Fund Management pushed higher as it said full-year underlying pre-tax profit rose 36%.

On the downside, Lloyds Bank lost ground as it reported a 57% jump in full-year profits and announced another £2bn share buyback, but also set aside £450m for the regulatory probe into UK motor financing.

Advertising giant WPP fell even as full-year results came in as expected, while Hargreaves Lansdown retreated as it posted a decline in net new business.

Market Movers

FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,672.00 0.12% FTSE 250 (MCX) 19,188.69 0.36% techMARK (TASX) 4,367.26 0.26%

FTSE 100 - Risers

Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) 359.60p 9.14% Beazley (BEZ) 633.50p 8.85% Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK) 2,104.00p 5.33% Intertek Group (ITRK) 4,624.00p 3.26% Anglo American (AAL) 1,761.80p 2.56% Mondi (MNDI) 1,410.50p 1.80% Rio Tinto (RIO) 5,235.00p 1.63% Scottish Mortgage Inv Trust (SMT) 774.00p 1.49% Sage Group (SGE) 1,190.00p 1.32% B&M European Value Retail S.A. (DI) (BME) 530.20p 1.14%

FTSE 100 - Fallers

Land Securities Group (LAND) 632.60p -2.04% Whitbread (WTB) 3,515.00p -1.68% Endeavour Mining (EDV) 1,290.00p -1.68% Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 42.57p -1.66% Barclays (BARC) 160.08p -1.65% AstraZeneca (AZN) 9,953.00p -1.47% Tesco (TSCO) 281.80p -1.30% WPP (WPP) 770.60p -1.26% SSE (SSE) 1,590.00p -1.21% Persimmon (PSN) 1,405.00p -1.13%

FTSE 250 - Risers

Indivior (INDV) 1,598.00p 17.85% Jupiter Fund Management (JUP) 87.35p 6.52% Carnival (CCL) 1,121.00p 6.26% Lancashire Holdings Limited (LRE) 656.50p 6.23% Bridgepoint Group (Reg S) (BPT) 293.60p 5.54% Me Group International (MEGP) 140.00p 5.42% Close Brothers Group (CBG) 339.20p 4.89% FirstGroup (FGP) 160.80p 3.74% Diversified Energy Company (DEC) 987.00p 3.13% Morgan Sindall Group (MGNS) 2,275.00p 2.71%

FTSE 250 - Fallers

Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 764.40p -5.09% Foresight Solar Fund Limited (FSFL) 85.00p -3.41% BBGI Global Infrastructure S.A. NPV (DI) (BBGI) 123.00p -2.54% Vesuvius (VSVS) 478.20p -2.05% Hays (HAS) 93.75p -1.94% TI Fluid Systems (TIFS) 146.80p -1.87% The Renewables Infrastructure Group Limited (TRIG) 98.30p -1.50% Shaftesbury Capital (SHC) 127.10p -1.32% British Land Company (BLND) 364.70p -1.27% Watches of Switzerland Group (WOSG) 427.00p -1.20%

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Important information: This information is not a personal recommendation for any particular investment. If you are unsure about the suitability of an investment you should speak to one of Fidelity’s advisers or an authorised financial adviser of your choice. When you are thinking about investing in shares, it’s generally a good idea to consider holding them alongside other investments in a diversified portfolio of assets. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.

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