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FTSE Bounces Back Closing Higher Despite Delta-Variant Concerns

07/20/2021 | 10:02am EDT

The FTSE 100 on Tuesday closed up, recovering from the major losses experienced in the previous session amid fears of the consequences of lifting Covid-19 restrictions. Reopening stocks and housebuilders led the gains, says Joshua Mahony, senior market analyst at IG. "Despite fears that the Delta variant could undermine travel and consumer activity, today's gains for the likes of Rolls-Royce, Hammerson, and Cineworld highlight how reopening stocks are likely to be at the forefront of recent volatility," Mahony adds.

Companies News: 

NAHL Anticipates Lower Revenue, Higher Profit for 1H

NAHL Group PLC said Tuesday that it expects to report lower revenue and higher profit for the first half of the year.

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Brand Architekts 2H Net Sales Rose But Remain Down for FY 2021

Brand Architekts Group PLC said Tuesday that net sales for the second half of the year rose 9.5% but still fell overall for the year as the company suffered from lower footfall in the high street due to coronavirus-related restrictions and lockdowns.

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Dianomi 1H Trading Was Strong, on Course to Meet Full-Year Market Views

Dianomi PLC said Tuesday that its performance in the first half of 2021 has been strong, and that it is trading in line with market expectations for the full year.

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Audioboom 1H Pretax Loss Narrowed as Revenue Nearly Doubled

Audioboom Group PLC that pretax loss for the first half narrowed on higher revenue as its audiences grew.

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Eurocell Expects to Beat 2021 Profit Forecasts After Strong 1H

Eurocell PLC said Tuesday that it expects to beat current market expectations for full-year pretax profit after a stronger-than-anticipated first-half performance and an improvement in its outlook for the second half.

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TClarke Swung to 1H Profit, Maintains Interim Dividend

TClarke PLC on Tuesday reported a profit for the first half of the year and proposed a dividend in line with a year earlier.

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Time Out Names Chris Ohlund as Executive Vice Chairman

Time Out Group PLC said Tuesday that it has appointed Chris Ohlund executive vice chairman, effective immediately.

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Rotala Swung to 1H Pretax Profit

Rotala PLC said Tuesday that it swung to a pretax profit for the first half of fiscal 2021 as revenue rose, and that trading for the period was underpinned by subsidies from the U.K.'s Department for Transport.

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Papillon Holdings Raises GBP5.5 Mln Via Share Placing

Papillon Holdings PLC said Tuesday that it has raised around 5.5 million pounds ($7.5 million) via a share issue and will use the money to build production at the Kilimapesa gold mine and for future growth.

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BrandShield Systems Secures New Contract

BrandShield Systems PLC said Tuesday that it has secured a contract in the personal-care industry.

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Distil Raises GBP3.2 Mln in Placing, Subscription to Invest in Ardgowan

Distil PLC said Tuesday that it has conditionally raised 3.2 million pounds ($4.4 million) through a placing and subscription so that it can invest in Ardgowan Distillery Co.

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U.S. Investors Seek Bargains in U.K. Home-Building Industry

U.K. home prices are surging as the country's economy reopens from the pandemic, and U.S. investors are getting in on the action by snapping up home-building companies at bargain prices.

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Shell to Appeal Dutch Court Ruling on Emissions Cuts

Royal Dutch Shell PLC on Tuesday confirmed it would appeal against a Dutch court ruling calling for the oil major to reduce its carbon emissions at a faster pace, saying it was being unfairly singled out.

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Network Rail FY 2021 Pretax Profit Rose

Network Rail said on Tuesday that pretax profit and revenue rose in fiscal 2021.

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Camellia Sees Lower 1H Adjusted Loss, Potential for Weaker Than Expected 2021 Results

Camellia PLC said Tuesday that it expects to report a lower adjusted loss for the first half of the year but warned of the potential for weaker-than-expected full-year results.

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Young & Co.'s Brewery Resolution to Reappoint Director Passes With Low Votes in Favor

Young & Co.'s Brewery PLC said Tuesday that all resolutions at its annual general meeting passed, though a resolution to reappoint Torquil Sligo-Young passed with low votes in favor.

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Nmcn Warns of Wider 2020 Underlying Pretax Loss

U.K. engineering and construction company Nmcn PLC said Tuesday that it expects to report an underlying pretax loss for 2020 significantly wider than it previously indicated.

Market Talk: 

AstraZeneca Seen Revising Outlook Upward to Reflect Closing Alexion Deal

1242 GMT - AstraZeneca should revise its outlook upward when it reports 2Q results on July 29 to reflect the closing of its acquisition of Alexion, Jefferies says. Alexion is expected to bring 16% EPS accretion by 2022 and 14% by 2025, according to Jefferies. AstraZeneca is headed for a compelling growth trajectory starting 2022 through 2025, it notes. The deal with Alexion has had some strategic merits for the British pharma company, enabling it to enter the attractive rare disease segment, Jefferies says. Furthermore, the deal is going to enable AstraZeneca to fund greater R&D spending to maximize the value of its own pipeline, the investment bank says.

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Victoria Skips FY Dividend; Likely to do More Deals

1218 GMT - Shares in Victoria fall 2.7% to 1065 pence after the flooring-product provider said it had decided against paying an annual dividend. The company reported record revenue and operating profit in the year to Apr. 3 and an encouraging outlook. "It's our view that, in a desperate search for yield, in recent years some investors are failing to see the wood for the trees," Victoria said. "Investors should be trying to maximize their total returns--share appreciation plus dividends--rather than focusing excessively on dividend return alone." Peel Hunt, which has a buy rating on the group, says it expects Victoria to make further acquisitions. "We have increased our target price to 1150p to reflect the potential," Peel analysts say.

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BHP Output Tops Hopes, FY Profit Likely to Fall Short

1214 GMT - BHP Group's production topped expectations, but the miner's full-year profit is likely to fall short of hopes, Citigroup says. Output was strong and marginally above Citi's forecasts, with copper, oil and coal 8%, 7% and 11% ahead respectively. Still, the bank says it's cutting its 2020/21 net profit-after-tax forecast by about 4% due to second-half costs. "We maintain 12-month target price at 2200 pence and neutral rating," Citi analysts say. Shares rise 1% to 2170p.

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AB Foods Shares Seen Undervalued Amid Plans for Primark Online Debut

1201 GMT - AB Foods shares are bound to appreciate as an already successful Primark goes online, Shore Capital says. The British conglomerate's clothing arm has outperformed high street peers since shops reopened in the U.K., underpinning the strength of the brand, Shore says. Meanwhile, Primark's U.S. market expanded significantly and is now profitable, it says. Current plans for digital expansion will enable Primark to compete with its online peers too, making AB Foods shares rather attractive, the investment group says. "With digitalization building at Primark, we reiterate our view that AB Foods equity... is grossly undervalued," it says. Shore has a buy rating on the stock. Shares are up 2% at 2,005 pence.

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Fevertree Loses Fizz as Margins Face Cost Pressure

1140 GMT - Shares in Fevertree Drinks drop 7% after the mixer-maker said rising difficulties caused by transport disruption and higher costs are putting pressure on margins. Despite such hurdles, the company's long-term prospects remain bright due to expansion in the U.S. and continental Europe, AJ Bell says. "Increasing costs of shipping goods globally are something many businesses are facing at the moment and it's sobering to see Fevertree suggest this could be a problem for the medium term at least," Bell's investment director Russ Mould says. "However, its rapid growth in the U.S. and Germany suggests there are still untapped opportunities to exploit."

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Biffa's 1Q Performance Prompts FY Upgrades, Says Numis

1135 GMT - Biffa's trading update for the first quarter is very encouraging, Numis says as it upgrades its fiscal 2022 earnings before interest, taxes, and amortization forecast by 10% to GBP96.3 million and its pretax profit and earnings per share estimates, both by 14%. The U.K. waste-management company has benefited from a strong recovery, Numis notes. The U.K. brokerage increases its target price to 400 pence a share and keeps its buy rating unchanged. "Given the positive earnings momentum in the business alongside the compelling sustainability story we believe a continued re-rating is merited," Numis says. Shares are up 2.5% at 344.50 pence.

Contact: London NewsPlus, Dow Jones Newswires; paul.larkins@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

07-20-21 1202ET

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