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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: Stocks gain after US rally; Bodycote jumps

(Sharecast News) - London stocks rose in early trade on Monday following solid gains on Wall Street at the end of last week.

At 0855 GMT, the FTSE 100 was up 0.3% at 7,484.78.

Susannah Streeter, head of money and markets at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: "It's a warmer to start to the week for the FTSE 100 and European indices, with stocks largely gaining ground. Even the sprinkle of cold scepticism about the prospects for interest rate cuts isn't acting as much of a dampener to the red-hot enthusiasm, which helped Wall Street gain fresh new highs on Friday.

"The Nikkei also scaled fresh heights, as the positive vibes spilled over into the tech sector, with the Japanese index appearing to suck in investor appetite for Asian shares, amid a continued aversion towards China.

"The FTSE 100 is largely sitting on the sidelines of the tech rally, given the lack of star names in the index. However, retail stocks have started on the front foot, as speculation has swirled about the potential for tax cuts in the UK Budget in March. It seems to have inspired a bit of confidence that respite is on the way for the retail sector. It'll be a difficult trade off however, given that more money in consumers' pockets is aimed at boosting demand for goods and services, just at the time when the Bank of England is trying to trample down inflation, which is still double the target. Nevertheless, there seems to be a little uplift in appetite for a raft of high street and luxury names, which have suffered due to concerns about aspirational shoppers tightening their belts."

In equity markets, Bodycote rallied as the thermal processing specialist said it would start a $60m share buyback programme after spending less than planned on acquisitions.

Caterer Compass Group nudged lower after saying it has agreed to buy rival CH&CO in a £475m deal.

Endeavour Mining lost ground after it said it achieved production guidance in 2023 but costs were higher than expected, as it pointed to further shareholder returns in the near future.

In broker note action, Segro was boosted by an upgrade to 'buy' from 'neutral' at Citi, while Sage was knocked lower by a downgrade to 'underweight' from 'equalweight' at Barclays.

Market Movers

FTSE 100 (UKX) 7,484.78 0.31% FTSE 250 (MCX) 19,000.57 0.68% techMARK (TASX) 4,336.89 0.19%

FTSE 100 - Risers

Entain (ENT) 951.20p 3.75% Ocado Group (OCDO) 570.00p 3.26% Barclays (BARC) 144.64p 2.55% SEGRO (SGRO) 847.20p 2.24% Beazley (BEZ) 524.50p 2.04% Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 43.51p 1.99% Melrose Industries (MRO) 588.00p 1.84% Scottish Mortgage Inv Trust (SMT) 769.40p 1.80% NATWEST GROUP (NWG) 211.40p 1.63% Convatec Group (CTEC) 249.00p 1.63%

FTSE 100 - Fallers

Sage Group (SGE) 1,136.00p -1.39% Endeavour Mining (EDV) 1,365.00p -1.30% GSK (GSK) 1,545.00p -1.19% Mondi (MNDI) 1,399.00p -0.89% Smith (DS) (SMDS) 276.50p -0.61% SSE (SSE) 1,747.50p -0.54% Rio Tinto (RIO) 5,350.00p -0.54% Glencore (GLEN) 410.30p -0.49% Unilever (ULVR) 3,698.00p -0.35% Compass Group (CPG) 2,165.00p -0.23%

FTSE 250 - Risers

Bodycote (BOY) 620.50p 4.11% Future (FUTR) 724.00p 3.21% Diversified Energy Company (DEC) 981.00p 2.40% Mobico Group (MCG) 85.40p 2.34% Wizz Air Holdings (WIZZ) 1,924.50p 2.31% Vistry Group (VTY) 932.00p 2.31% Murray International Trust (MYI) 245.50p 2.29% Allianz Technology Trust (ATT) 319.00p 2.24% Carnival (CCL) 1,235.50p 2.15% Virgin Money UK (VMUK) 150.45p 2.14%

FTSE 250 - Fallers

Bridgepoint Group (Reg S) (BPT) 251.40p -4.34% RHI Magnesita N.V. (DI) (RHIM) 3,274.00p -2.44% Fidelity China Special Situations (FCSS) 186.20p -2.31% Fidelity Emerging Markets Limited Ptg NPV (FEML) 594.50p -2.22% Tyman (TYMN) 290.00p -1.36% Jupiter Fund Management (JUP) 74.55p -1.06% Quilter (QLT) 95.30p -0.94% Templeton Emerging Markets Inv Trust (TEM) 142.40p -0.84% Abrdn (ABDN) 177.25p -0.73% 3i Infrastructure (3IN) 320.00p -0.62%

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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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