UK stock market morning note (January 10, 2014)
January 10, 2014, Friday, 10:32 GMT | 05:32 EST | 16:02 IST | 18:32 SGT
The FTSE 100 is called to open higher this morning as investors focus on the release of more economic data domestically and from the US with UK manufacturing and industrial production figures due out followed at lunchtime in the US with the non-farm payrolls report. Domestic data out overnight from the BRC showed that on a lfl basis retail sales rose 0.4% in December than on the previous year with total sales up 1.8% over the same period. However, online non-food sales grew 19.2% over this time, reinforcing the importance of retailers online strategies. Another survey from the RICS reported that the construction workloads balance rose to +38% in Q4 2013, the highest level since records began in Q2 1994, noting that construction sector output is expected to accelerate this year but warning of a lack of skills and materials. Commodity prices are generally firmer and on the foreign exchanges, the dollar continues to rise against the yen but is lower against both sterling and the euro but within narrow trading ranges as markets await the US jobs data.
JD Sports Christmas Trading Statement reports that in the IMS released on 29 November, lfl sales in the core UK and Ireland Fashion Fascias for the 42 weeks to 23 November stood cumulatively at much the same level as at 26 weeks when they were +5.8%. Following stronger trading in the Christmas period, lfl sales for the core stores at the end of the 48 weeks to 4 January are now marginally ahead of this level with underlying product gross margins largely maintained. It added that it remains on course to deliver headline PBT and exceptional items in line with current market expectations.
Cineworld Combination with Cinema City International. It has confirmed a deal to combine with Cinema City to create the second largest cinema business in Europe. Cineworld is raising GBP110m in a 8 for 25 rights issue at 230p per share.