UK stock market morning note (February 05, 2014)
February 5, 2014, Wednesday, 10:50 GMT | 05:50 EST | 15:20 IST | 17:50 SGT
The FTSE 100 is called to open lower this morning with sentiment still cautious given the mixed performances overnight on Wall Street and in Asia. Today's economic diary sees the release of domestic services PMI data followed at lunchtime in the US with the ADP non-farm employment numbers and later in the session the ISM non-manufacturing PMI figures. Commodity prices are generally firmer and on the foreign exchanges, the pound is up slightly against both the dollar and the euro but within narrow trading ranges.
Hargreaves Lansdown Half Year Results see record PBT and revenue of GBP104.1m and GBP158.4m respectively, representing growth of 11% and 13%. Total assets under administration rose 19% since June 2013 and are ahead 43% on December 2012 to GBP43.4bn with total net business inflows of GBP2.8bn. There was continued growth in active client numbers which increased by 77,000 since June 2013 to 584,000. The interim dividend is raised 11% to 7p a share and it noted that H2 will again be key to its full year performance. It added that the level of world stock markets has an effect on profits and has commissioned a review of increasing its cash services to clients. It also noted the announcement of its new RDR pricing last month and stated that further initiatives and innovations are due for launch in the next 6 months.
ICAP IMS reports that as a result of challenging market conditions, revenue in Q3 was down 6% on the prior period and 5% lower on a constant currency basis. The ongoing cost savings programme remains on track and management's expectations for PBT for the full year are unchanged on a constant currency basis. However, it noted that there are a number of external factors that could affect performance in Q4 in Global Broking.
Daily Mail & General Trust IMS reports that trading in Q1 was in line with its expectations and the outlook for the year is unchanged. It also noted that the board of Zoopla Property Group is exploring various strategic options and as a 52.6% shareholder, it is participating in these discussions.