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FTSE 100 ends positive with coal miner Thungela Resources leading the way

The UK blue chip index ended in positive territory but US investors remain cautious

coal
  • FTSE 100 closes up 18 points
  • Wall Street mixed and flat at midday
  • Intermediate Capital climbs 

5.03pm: Markets struggle to find a spark

London's leading index ended Tuesday up 18 points, 0.3%, at 7,095, while the FTSE 250 dropped 13 points to 22,896.

"Stock markets remain in stubborn mood, with a mixed picture prevailing across the US and Europe today," IG Chief Market Analyst Chris Beauchamp wrote. "...Financial conditions remain tighter in Europe than the US, which should continue to weigh on the greenback, but as ever investors are determined to keep an eye on inflation, in the hope that a spark can be found to reignite the gains of earlier in the year."

In the US, the Dow was down 14 points to 34,617 at midday, after a brief downward spike that saw the index drop as low as 34,453. The Nasdaq was up 2 points to 13,883, and the S&P 500 was down 2 points to 4,225.

3.59pm: Miner moves higher, housebuilders fall

Leading shares are in a bit of a holding pattern.

The FTSE 100 is up 35.6 points or 0.5% at 7112.82, while the mid-cap FTSE 250 is less enthused by the day, up 0.13% at 22,938.03.

The biggest riser in the blue chip index is Thungela Resources Ltd (LON:TGA). Yes indeed.

Its shares have jumped 34.12% to 148.9p, although this is less impressive when you realise it joined the FTSE 100 on Monday at 150p and promptly plunged to 111p.

So it has effectively just about recovered yesterday's losses.

The company is a thermal coal miner spun off from Anglo American PLC (LON:AAL) and was the subject of a negative note from short seller Boatman Capital Research over the weekend.

It will also not remain a member of the FTSE 100 for too long.

On Friday it effects a nationality change from the UK to South Africa with its primary listing in Johannesburg. So it will not be eligible for inclusion in the FTSE UK indices.

Until Friday however it will sit in the same category as Anglo, and therefore is in the FTSE 100 for the week.

The index compilers FTSE Russell must have had fun with that one.

Elsewhere asset manager Intermediate Capital Group PLC (LON:ICP) is up 6.17% following its results.

But housebuilders have lost some of Monday's gains despite Bank of England chief economist Andy Haldane saying at a University of Glasgow seminar that the UK housing market is "on fire."

Taylor Wimpey PLC (LON:TW.) is down 1.44% and Barratt Developments PLC (LON:BDEV) has fallen 0.96%.

3.17pm: US jobs data beats expectations

More signs of the strength of the US economy.

Job openings figures - showing the number of vacancies employers are trying to fill and therefore a sign of increased demand - came in better than expected at 9.286mln in April.

 

 

Of course that may well mean a rerival of the fears about inflation amid a growing economy, and the possible action the world's central banks might take to tame it.

Further clues will come later in the week with Thursday's US consumer price index data, and Wall Street seems to have decided to play it cautious until then.

So the Dow Jones Industrial Average is down just 0.14%, the S&P 500 is barely changed and the Nasdaq Composite is up 0.36%.

As for the FTSE 100, it remains in positive territory, up 32.51 points or 0.46% at 7109.73.

2.55pm: Proactive North America headlines:

Northstar Gold Corp (CSE:NSG) (OTCMKTS:NSGCF) (FRA:3WV) consolidates its ground at Miller gold property with Searles acquisition

Water Tower Research releases schedule for its ClimateTech & Sustainable Investing Research Fireside Chats for the week of June 7-June 11

Binovi Technologies Corp (CVE:VISN) (OTCQB:BNVIF) set to debut its Binovi Touch Elite at the NATA Virtual Clinical Symposia & AT Expo

Marvel Discovery Corp (CVE:MARV) (OTCPINK:IMTFF) (FRA:O4T1) acquires 10,250 hectares near Gander, Newfoundland

BioHarvest Sciences Inc (CSE:BHSC) expects to commercialize its first cannabis-based products in first half of 2022

GGX Gold Corp (CVE:GGX) (OTCQB:GGXXF) (FRA:3SR) begins diamond drilling at its Gold Drop property in British Columbia

Altamira Gold Corp (CVE:ALTA) (OTCPINK:EQTRF) uncovers new high-chargeability anomaly at the Mutum target on its Apiacas project

Clean Seed Capital Group Ltd (CVE:CSX) (OTCMKTS:CLGPF) applies to have its shares trade on the OTCQB Venture Market

Avalon GloboCare Corp (NASDAQ:AVCO) says CEO to chair S-layer nanotechnology, QTY code platforms session at 2021 World Stem Cell Summi

GlobeX Data Ltd (OTCQB:SWISF) (CSE:SWIS) (FRA:GDT) ramps up Sekur marketing campaign with 60-second ad spot to reach 50 million US households

CO2 GRO Inc (CVE:GROW) (OTCQB:BLONF) (FRA:4021) announces a CO2 Delivery Solutions commercial feasibility with UK tomato greenhouse grower

Tartisan Nickel Corp (CSE:TN) (OTCPINK:TTSRF) closes first tranche of its C$4.5M flow-through financing

Mandalay Resources Corporation (TSE:MND) (OTCQB:MNDJF) (FRA:R7X2) 'excited' by Shepherd zone discovery at its Australia mine and continuity of high grades

First Mining Gold Corp (TSE:FF) (OTCQX:FFMGF) (FRA:FMG)closes Hope Brook earn-in agreement with Big Ridge Gold Corp in cash and share deal

Mirasol Resources Ltd (CVE:MRZ) (OTCPINK:MRZLF) (FRA:M8R) initiates 2,000-meter drill program at Rubi Copper project in Chile

Tocvan Ventures Corp (CSE:TOC) (FRA:TV3) set to bolster portfolio with acquisition of El Picacho gold project in Mexico

Phunware Inc (NASDAQ:PHUN) (FRA:2RJ) releases new mobile app PhunWallet on Google Play for Android

Idaho Champion Gold Mines Canada Inc (CSE:ITKO) (OTCQB:GLDRF) (FRA:1QB1) releases 2021 drill program plans

Plurilock Security Inc (CVE:PLUR) (OTCQB:PLCKF) inks contract extension with US Special Operations Command

NexTech AR Solutions Corp (OTCQB:NEXCF) (NEO:NTAR (FRA:N29) says EdTechX approved as a co-sell partner on Microsoft Azure

O3 Mining Inc (CVE:OIII) (OTCQX:OIIIF) says latest drill results from Québec show potential to expand resources at depth at Marban project

Fobi AI Inc (CVE:FOBI) (OTCQB:RACMF) taps former NielsenIQ executive Richard Lee as its SVP of strategy and corporate development

XPhyto Therapeutics Corp (CSE:XPHY) (OTCMKTS:XPHYF) (FRA:4XT) says it is rapidly advancing its mescaline program for psychedelic therapies

2.41pm: Wall Street opens mostly higher

The main indices on Wall Street were mostly higher on Tuesday morning as traders digested US trade data and awaited job openings figures.

Shortly after the opening bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.01% at 34,627 while the S&P 500 climbed 0.15% to 4,232 and the Nasdaq rose 0.44% to 13,943.

Meanwhile, shares in cloud computing firm Fastly Inc (NYSE:FSLY) jumped 1.6% to US$51.49 as traders seemed to shrug off the firm’s role in a major internet outage earlier this morning.

Back in London, the FTSE 100 had lost some ground but was still up 31 points at 7,108 at around 2.40pm.

2.17pm: US trade deficit narrows

The US trade deficit narrowed in April from a record US$75bn the previous month, down 8.2% to US$68.9bn.

This is pretty much in line with forecasts of a figure of US$69bn.

Exports rose 1.1% while imports fell 1.4%.

The news has not exactly moved the dial on Wall Street, although all three major indices are now in positive territory, just.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is set to open 8 points or 0.01% higher, the S&P is forecast to rise 0.18% and the Nasdaq Composite 0.54%.

In the UK the FTSE 100 is at its peak for the day, up 41.91 points or 0.59% at 7119.13.

12.32pm: US markets drift ahead of economic data

Wall Street is heading for a mixed but frankly undramatic open despite the major but short-lived internet outage.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is looking at a barely perceptible 0.07% or 17 point dip. The S&P 500 is set to edge up 0.11% and the Nasdaq Composite - shrugging off the outage and the weekend's G7 agreement on taxing (mostly) tech companies - is expected to add 0.38%.

Fastly Inc (NYSE:FSLY), the web hosting platform being blamed for the outage, is not surprising down in pre-trading although only by 1.68%.

Investors still seem to be focused on inflationary pressures, and are perhaps being cautious ahead of Thursday's US CPI figures.

There is some US data due, with trade figures and job opening numbers.

Michael Hewson at CMC Markets said: "The latest JOLTs survey is expected to see another increase in job openings to 8.2mln in April, up from 8.12mln in March, as US businesses struggle to fill a growing number of vacancies at a time when US consumers have seen two big fiscal handouts in the first quarter of this year."

European markets seem a little perkier .

Sophie Griffiths, market analyst at Oanda, said: "European stocks have risen to fresh all-time highs on Tuesday, boosted by travel stocks, real estate and an unexpected upward revision to the Eurozone's first-quarter GDP. However, an unexpected decline in German industrial production and mixed ZEW economic sentiment data is keeping the upside capped."

Meanwhile the FTSE 100 is moving higher again, up 25.65 points or 0.36% at 7102.87.

12.05pm: London Metal Exchange to bring back open outcry trading

The affected websites seem to be back up, with the problem looking like an issue with web hosting platform Fastly Inc (NYSE:FSLY).

But the outage seems to vindicate a move by the London Metal Exchange to return - partly at least - to open outcry for setting the price of industrial metals such as copper and zinc rather than all electronic trading.

The move, coincidentally announced not long before the internet had a seizure, came after some opposition from users to losing the sight of metals traders shouting loudly at each other in the so-called Ring at the exchange.

Open outcry has of course been suspended during the pandemic, but it will now return on 6 September.

There has been a compromise though. To mollify those who wanted to go all digital, the physical trading will only set the lunchtime official prices. Closing prices will be decided electronically.

 

11.37am: Websites hit by internet outage

A number of major websites ranging from Amazon to the Guardian to the UK government have been knocked off-line in a major internet outage.

So far the cause of the problem is not known, but Sky News is reporting there was a spike in reports of outages on Amazon Web Services.

So far the London Stock Exchange seems unaffected so we can report that the FTSE 100 is now up just 5.85 points or 0.083% at 7083.07.

10.43am: Asset manager tops the risers

The leading index has sparked into life, helped by the arrival of an activist investor pushing for change at insurer Aviva PLC (LON:AV.)

But the top riser is Intermediate Capital Group PLC (LON:ICP).

The asset management business has climbed 6.26% to 2291p after it reported record full year profits of £597.7mln and increased its annual dividend for the eleventh successive time (click here to read more).

The heavyweight oil companies are proving a bit of a drag on the market. Brent crude continued recent weakness following this week's news of a 15% fall in Chinese crude imports in May, suggesting a slowdown in demand. It has dipped 0.56% to $71.09 a barrel, helping push Royal Dutch Shell PLC (LON:RDSA) down 1.22% and BP PLC (LON:BP. 0.31% lower.

Still, this has not stopped the FTSE 100 moving back above the 7100 level, up 25.83 points or 0.36% at 7103.05.

9.44am: Insurer in focus on calls for change

A bit of excitement now.

Shares in insurance giant Aviva PLC (LON:AV.) have jumped 3.53% or 14.5p to 425.2p on reports that activist investor Cevian Capital has taken a 5% stake and is pushing for change.

According to the Financial Times, Cevian wants the business to cut costs further and return £5bn to shareholders.

Cevian managing partner Christer Gardell, said: "Aviva has been poorly managed for many years and its high-quality core businesses have been held back by high costs and a series of bad strategic decisions."

 Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell said: "“One might initially think this is an odd move, given that activists often push for asset disposals and Aviva has just finished a big spate of selling international operations. However, Aviva is also sitting on a large amount of cash from these sales, and it appears that Cevian wants the insurer to be generous with cash returns to investors and to make deeper cost cuts."

Sadly this has done little to spark the FTSE 100 into life,

The leading index is up just 8.6 points or 0.12% at 7085.82.

Reports that the June 21 date for lifting lockdown might be delayed is doing little for market sentiment.

9.20am: Bitcoin hit by ransom recovery?

Some are attributing the latest fall in Bitcoin - down 8.8% to $32,942 overnight - to news that millions of dollars worth of the cryptocurrency had been recovered by US officials from a ransom paid to hackers by the operator of the Colonial Pipeline following a cyberattack last month.

Whatever the case, it has undermined the sector, with the total market capitalisation of cryptocurrencies falling below US$1.5trn for the first time since May..

8.59am: Markets off to an uninspiring start

Leading shares have edged higher in early trading but it is nothing to write home about.

The FTSE 100 is up 13.53 points or 0.19% at 7090.75, while the mid-cap FTSE 250 is even less enthusiastic, up a miniscule 0.08% at 22,925.64.

With little on the economic agenda apart from US job openings and trade figures, investors are keeping their powder dry until the US inflation figures later in the week. Then there could be sparks.

Neil Wilson at Markets.com said: "Markets seem to be bobbing along pretty happily until there is the next big short-term risk scare – a well-understood, or at least fairly static, macro picture for the time being keeping things on an even keel.

"Inflation remains the big unknown but for now, bond yields are steady - US Treasury yields continue to look pretty calm around 1.55% - but the path for bond yields seems only higher this year. The question is one of timing and markets seem happy to wait until they get a clearer signal.

"Look out Thursday for the double header of the European Central Bank..and the US CPI inflation print, which is expected to be something in the region of +3.4%, which is another big reading after the +4.2% hit last month."

On a quiet day for corporate news too - it feels like summer is really coming - British American Tobacco PLC (LON:BATS) has added 2.24% or 62p to 2836p after a positive update.

Richard Hunter, head of markets at interactive investor, said: “BATS is firmly focused on the changing habits of consumers and has made further progress to that end.

"The company reiterated its target of £5 billion of revenues from New Category products by 2025 and 50 million consumers of non-combustible products by 2030. The latter figure currently stands at 14.9 million, having added 1.4 million consumers in the latest quarter.

"At the same time, traditional sales have also held up on the whole, such that BATS has upped its revenue growth guidance for 2021 to over 5%, from a previous range of between 3-5%. Strong pricing overall, demonstrating once more the defensive nature of the stock, combined with a worthwhile contribution from the US, enabled the upgrade.

"The stock has underperformed of late given the industry headwinds, having lost 13% over the last year, as compared to a gain of 9% for the wider FTSE100. This has not been enough to deter supporters, however, given its cash-generative abilities and generous dividend yield, with the market consensus resolutely remaining at a strong buy.”

Proactive news headlines

Feedback PLC (LON:FDBK) said it expects to benefit from “increasing demand” for its software solutions going forward, allowing it to grow repeating revenues and increase product visibility through its software-as-a-service (SaaS) model.

Mineral and Financial Investments Ltd (LON:MAFL), an investor in junior mining companies, saw its net asset value rise 13% in the third quarter to end March 2021 as it increased its precious metals weighting.

Oncimmune Holdings PLC (LON:ONC) said revenues in the year to the end of May were eight times higher year-on-year, in line with expectations. Revenue growth in the current fiscal year is expected to be predominantly driven by the continued strength of the ImmunoINSIGHTS services business. 

Xpediator PLC (LON:XPD) said it is “well placed to exceed market forecasts” for its current financial year as the company said demand for its transport and logistics services has remained strong.

Panther Metals PLC (LON:PALM) said a soil survey will start next week on the Dotted Lake property in Ontario, Canada that it hopes will build out and in-fill the westerly strike extensions of high-grade gold mineralisation intersected by historical trenching.

Cornerstone FS PLC (LON:CSFS) said trading volumes have increased this year and the group has continued to expand its customer base.

Base Resources Limited (ASX:BSE, LON:BSE) advised investors that Canaccord Genuity has been appointed as the company’s joint UK broker.

Zephyr Energy PLC (LON:ZPHR) has pledged to achieve 100% carbon-neutral operations by the end of September this year.

ADM Energy PLC (LON:ADME) clarified the structure through which it invested in the Barracuda oil field in Nigeria, noting that its investment was made with an acquisition of a 51% interest in KONH UK Ltd, which in turn holds a 70% stake in the Barracuda risk-sharing agreement.

Cobra Resources PLC (LON:COBR) said it is sending out documents ahead of its annual general meeting on 30 June.

Panthera Resources PLC (LON:PAT) said assay results from recent drilling at the Paimasa gold project in central Nigeria will be delayed while some samples are subject to re-assay by accelerated cyanide leach.

Kodal Minerals PLC (LON:KOD) has moved a step closer to being granted a mining licence for its flagship Bougouni lithium project in southern Mali. 

6.44am: Another dawdling day but Bitcoin may suffer

The FTSE 100 is headed for another dawdling day, though some market watchers predict a Bitcoin crash could add drama to proceedings.

London’s blue chip shares index is heading for a two-point decline at the open, according to spread-betters in the City, following a tortuously slow start to the week, gaining eight points to close at 7,077.22.

Wall Street had a mixed session overnight, with the Dow Jones falling 0.4%, the S&P 500 finishing just below flat and the Nasdaq Composite rising 0.5%.

Meme stocks GameStop and AMC Entertainment led a rally for the small cap index of the Russell 2000 (read more here).

Largely the markets are in a range-bound pattern as traders await US inflation data later in the week and negotiations over President Biden’s infrastructure package, said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at Oanda.

Today, data such as German factory orders, US trade and JOLTS jobs openings will be “of passing interest”, he said.

“One thing that has caught my eye today is my old friend Bitcoin,” he added.

The analysts said he previously thought the cryptocurrency was forming a technical analysis pattern akin to a “bearish symmetrical triangle".

“However, its fall through $35,000.00 of fiat US Dollars, backed by the tax-payer revenues of America, triggered a downside breakout.

“The breakout has a target of $22,000.00, which could happen in the next few days. Failure of $30,000.00 will basically put every long position since January 1st in the red, which I believe, will trigger another capitulation trade.”

Around the markets

Pound - down 0.1% to US$0.7063

Oil - Brent crude down 0.7% to US$70.96

Gold - down 0.1% to US$1,896.8

Bitcoin  - down 10% (over 24 hours) to US$32,735

6.50am: Early Markets - Asia / Australia

Stocks in the Asia-Pacific region were mostly lower on Tuesday as Japan’s economy shrank 3.9% in the first quarter, an improvement from the initial estimate of a 5.1% contraction.

The Shanghai Composite in China fell 0.81% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index declined 0.42%

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 slipped 0.14% while South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.06%.

Shares in Australia lifted, with the S&P/ASX 200 trading 0.15% higher.

READ OUR ASX REPORT HERE

Proactive Australia news:

Pantoro Ltd (ASX:PNR) (FRA:RKN) has discovered high-grade mineralisation in the first drilling program into the Noganyer Formation, a sedimentary iron formation on the eastern edge of the Scotia Mining Centre at Norseman Gold Project (PNR 50%) in Western Australia.

Nova Minerals Ltd (OTCMKTS:NVAAF) (ASX:NVA) (FRA:QM3) has reported strong early results from infill drilling at Korbel Main, within its flagship Estelle Gold Project in the prolific Tintina Gold Belt in Alaska.

Ora Banda Mining Ltd (ASX:OBM) (FRA:M6N) has received firm commitments from new and existing professional, and sophisticated investors to raise $21 million at 17 cents per share.

Australian Vanadium Ltd (ASX:AVL) has confirmed high vanadium extraction rates of 88-90% during the first stage of a two-stage pilot-scale water leach process for the Australian Vanadium Project.

Piedmont Lithium Inc (NASDAQ:PLL) (ASX:PLL) (OTCMKTS:PDDTF) has completed the final leg in the strategic partnership with Sayona Mining Ltd (ASX:SYA) (OTCMKTS: DMNXF) and its investment in Sayona Québec Inc.

Queensland Pacific Metals Ltd (ASX:QPM) (FRA:4EA) has entered into a binding agreement with LG Energy Solution (LGES) and POSCO GEM 1ST FUND for a combined equity investment of US$15 million with shares up as much as 24%.

Maximus Resources Limited (ASX:MXR) (FRA:M5F) has started a 1,500-metre reverse circulation (RC) resource extension and infill drilling program at the Wattle Dam Gold Mine, 24 kilometres from Kambalda, Western Australia’s premier gold and nickel mining district.

St George Mining Ltd (ASX:SGQ) has kicked off its maiden drilling campaign at the Paterson Project in WA's Paterson Province, "elephant country" for copper-gold discoveries.

Golden Rim Resources Ltd (ASX:GMR) has released additional geochemical sample results from Loreto copper target at its Paguanta Project in northern Chile, which indicate the porphyry centre, a highly prospective copper target, is around 2.3 kilometres x 1 kilometres - or double the area suggested by previous sampling.

Prospect Resources Ltd (ASX:PSC) has completed around 92% of the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) scope for its high purity petalite pilot plant at the Arcadia Lithium Project in Zimbabwe.

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