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Reports UK

UK stock market morning note (July 25, 2014)

July 25, 2014, Friday, 10:35 GMT | 05:35 EST | 15:05 IST | 17:35 SGT
Contributed by SVS Securities

The FTSE 100 is called to open lower this morning following the indifferent overnight performances on Wall Street and in Asia with sentiment cautious as we end the trading week against the backdrop of the ongoing developments in Ukraine and Gaza. The economic diary today focuses on the release of the first domestic reading of GDP for Q2 which if growth of 0.8% is confirmed, would take the size of the UK economy back above its previous high last seen in Q1 2008. This will be followed at lunchtime in the US with the publication of durable goods orders. Commodity prices are flat to lower and on the foreign exchanges, the dollar is slightly weaker against the pound, euro and yen but all are within narrow trading ranges ahead of these data releases.


Company Announcements

Balfour Beatty and Carillion

The companies have confirmed that after an approach from Carillion the parties are engaged in preliminary talks over a possible merger. A further announcement will be made in due course although there is no certainty that any offer will be forthcoming.

Vodafone

IMS reports that group revenue fell by 2.9% to GBP10.2bn with service revenue in the quarter to end June 2014 down 4.2% to GBP9.4bn. It noted that trading in the period was consistent with management's expectations and confirmed its outlook for the 2015 financial year

Royal Bank of Scotland

Preliminary Interim Results ahead of its announcement on 1 August 2014 are expected to reflect a better than anticipated operating performance helped by more favourable credit conditions. H1 PBT is expected to be GBP2.65bn (H1 2013: GBP1.37bn). However, it added that it is actively managing down a raft of legacy factors including conduct and litigation issues which are likely to hit profits going forward.

BSkyB

It has announced a placing of 156.1m new shares to part fund its proposed acquisitions of Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland with it noting that these combine complementary businesses with shared brand and market leading capabilities. It also separately announced its Final Results with adjusted revenue up 6.5% to GBP7.6bn with operating profits down 5.3% at GBP1.26bn. The full year dividend is raised 7% to 32p a share. It added that after a successful year of investment it was well placed to exploit opportunities and continue to deliver growth and returns to shareholders.

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