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Monday 24th of May 2010
May 18, 2010    

Yell Group drops 22 percent on news, declines in revenues

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by Elaine Frei
Yell Group drops 22 percent on news, declines in revenues

European equities markets were higher Tuesday, with gains coming as worries receded that the region’s debt problems will put a damper on economic growth.

The advances came despite a decline in the ZEW index on investor and analyst expectations, which fell from 53 in April to 45.8 in May.

The FTSE 100 was 0.85 percent higher to 5,307.34 in London, while the FTSE 250 added 0.62 percent to 9,993.24.

Despite the gains, directories publisher Yell Group (LSE: YELL) was down 21.97 percent on the 250 for the worst performance of the session in London after it said that both its CEO and CFO are leaving, and on results showing that revenues were down 11 percent in the year ending 31 March.

Newspaper and magazine publisher Trinity Mirror (LSE: TNI) was also lower, dropping 4.26 percent.

Regus plc (LSE: RGU), which provides facilities management and support services for businesses, also fell substantially on the 250, dropping 16.74 percent after it said signs of improvement for the business in the first quarter are fading.

The biggest gain on the 100 and in London came from Man Group (LSE: EMG), which added 9.11 percent after the investment manager’s recommendation from Numis Securities went from “add” to “buy”, while over on the 250 Intermediate Capital Group (LSE: ICP) put in the best performance on that index with a gain of 7.12 percent.

There were gains in the energy sector as oil explorer and producer EnQuest (LSE: ENQ) added 6.56 percent to lead the sector, followed by Heritage Oil (LSE: HOIL), which gained 6.04 percent.

The energy sector was mixed however, with a few decliners led by Melrose Resources (LSE: MRS), which dropped 1.23 percent.

British Land (LSE: BLND) led a mostly higher real estate sector as it added 4.23 percent after it said its net income was £1.14 billion in the fiscal year ending 31 March after having a loss of £3.88 billion the year before.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was up 1.37 percent to 1,026.98 while the Dax added 1.47 percent to 6,155.93, the CAC-40 was 2.08 percent higher to 3,617.32 and the IBEX gained 3.68 percent to 9,627.6.

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region were mixed as shippers and traders fell in Japan but banks in China and property companies with interests there saw gains after recent declines.

The Nikkei 225 added 0.07 percent to 10,242.64 in Tokyo, but the Topix index was down 0.71 percent to 913.91 and the Mothers market dropped 4.94 percent to 403.13, bringing its decline in two days to nearly 12 percent.

The declines for the Mothers market came after a company related to the semiconductor sector admitted that reports it had exaggerated sales were substantially correct, and it was announced that the company, FOI (TYO: 6253), will be deslited on 19 June.

Shippers were down on a decline in shipping rates, with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (TYO: 9104) falling 3.8 percent while Nippon Yusen KK (TYO: 9101) was down 5.2 percent.

Traders were also lower after Monday’s declines in metals prices, as Mitsui & Co (TYO: 8031) dropped 0.9 percent while Mitsubishi Corp (TYO: 8058) was down 1.6 percent and Itochu Corp (TYO: 8001) was 2.2 percent lower.

Australia’s markets were also mixed, with the S&P/ASX200 adding 0.08 percent to 4,470.7 while the Sydney Ordinaries dropped 0.02 percent to 4,500.

Macarthur Coal (ASX: MCC) was 16 percent lower after it turned down a bid from US-based Peabody Energy Corp (NYSE: BTU).

The Sensex added 0.24 percent to 16,875.76 in India, the Straits Times Index was up 0.38 percent to 2,844.35 in Singapore, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was 1.17 percent higher to 19,944.94 and the Shanghai Composite gained 1.36 percent to 2,594.78.

Chinese banks were up on the possibility that China could hold off on more tightening of monetary policy due to the debt crisis in Europe, with China Construction Bank (SSE: 601939) adding 1.2 percent while Bank of China Ltd’s (SEHK: 3988) Hong Kong-listed shares were up 1.8 percent and Bank of Communications (SSE: 601328) gained 2.7 percent.

Hong Kong-listed property companies with interest in China were also higher after recent declines as China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd (SEHK: 688) was up 3 percent and China Resources Land Ltd (SEHK: 1109) gained 6.5 percent.

Markets seeing declines included Taiwan’s Taiex, which was down 0.18 percent to 7,585.3 while the Kospi dropped 0.5 percent to 1,643.24 in South Korea.

As in Tokyo, South Korean shipper Hanjin Shipping Co (KRX: 117930) was lower, falling 5.2 percent on the session.

Wall Street was mixed in midday trade as the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.19 percent to 10,646.16 at just before 1 p.m. local time, but the S&P 500 had dropped 0.02 percent to 1,136.72 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.34 percent to 2,346.28.

Crude oil prices were higher in midday trade and while most metals were higher, the price of gold was down more than $12 per troy ounce.

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