Premier Oil drops 9.71 percent on equipment concerns

| August 25, 2011
Premier Oil drops 9.71 percent on equipment concerns

European equities markets were lower Thursday on the possibility that regulators will impose new restrictions on equities markets as a deadline approaches in France, Spain and Italy for a decision on whether or not to extend bans on short-selling which expire over the next two days.

The FTSE 100 was down 1.44 percent to 5,131.1 in London, while the FTSE 250 dropped 0.2 percent to 10,021.4, with banks and miners mixed, while the energy sector was mostly lower.

Premier Oil (LSE: PMO) was 9.71 percent lower, leading declines on the 250, on concerns about whether Sevan Marine ASA (OSE: SEVAN) can deliver equipment to begin pumping oil from a UK field on time next year, while auto insurer Admiral Group (LSE: ADM) was down again, dropping 5.47 percent on missed profits estimates to lead decliners on the 100.

A mixed banking sector led gains on the 100 as all three banks that advanced in the sector were among the top five gainers on the index, with Barclays Bank (LSE: BARCA) up 5.55 percent as the best performer on the 100, while Royal Bank of Scotland Group (LSE: RBS) added 5.53 percent and Lloyds Banking Group (LSE: LLOY) was 2.92 percent higher.

Chemicals group AZ Electronic Materials (LSE: AZEM) had the best day on the 250, adding 7.54 percent.

The food and beverage sector was dominated by drinks makers as alcoholic beverages specialist Diageo (LSE: DGE) added 4.65 percent after it said profits were up in the first half of the year, while soft drinks manufacturer Britvic (LSE: BVIC) was the worst performer in the sector as it dropped 6.27 percent.

Most homebuilders were higher, led by Persimmon (LSE: PSN) which gained 5.33 percent after RBS Group raised its recommendation from “hold” to “buy”, while miners were mixed as Kazakhmys (LSE: KAZ) was up 5.17 percent to lead gains in the sector after it announced a share-buy back and even though profits fell in the first half and gold and silver miner Fresnillo (LSE: FRES) was down 2.94 percent and was the worst performer in the sector.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was down 1.25 percent to 925.04 while the CAC-40 fell 0.65 percent to 3,119m, the IBEX was 0.84 percent lower to 8,299.1 and the Dax dropped 1.71 percent to 5,584.14.

Most markets in the Asia-Pacific region advanced Thursday, helped by yesterday’s report from the US Commerce Department that durable goods orders were higher in the US and after US home prices were reported up by 0.9 percent in June from May.

The Nikkei 225 was up 1.4 percent to 8,772.36 in Tokyo, while the Topix index added 1.29 percent to 751.82 and the Mothers market gained 0.57 percent to 430, with the technology sector seeing gains after Apple Inc (NAS: AAPL) chief executive officer Steve Jobs tendered his resignation yesterday, with consumer electronics manufacturer Sony (TYO: 6758) up 2.8 percent while Panasonic (TYO: 6752) added 3.8 percent.

Despite his resignation as CEO, Jobs will remain with Apple as chairman, and as the largest single shareholder in Walt Disney Co (NYSE: DIS), at 7.4 percent, he will reportedly stay on as a board member there.

Toyota Motor (TYO: 7203) was up 1.7 percent on demand as orders for cars was a big component of the gains in durable good orders, while Nippon Electric Glass (TYO: 5214) gained 6.1 percent after Goldman Sachs raised its rating on the glass maker from “neutral” to “buy”.

Other gainers in the region included South Korea’s Kospi, which was up 0.56 percent to 1,764.58 while Australia’s markets were higher as the Sydney Ordinaries added 1.06 percent to 4,280.5 and the S&P/ASX200 was 1.08 percent higher to 4,212.8, the Hang Seng was 1.47 percent higher to 19,752.5 in Hong Kong, Singapore’s Straits Times Index was up 1.69 percent to 2,765.74 and the Shanghai Composite added 2.92 percent to 2,615.26.

India’s Sensex was down 0.85 percent to 16.146.3 and the Taiex dropped 1.23 percent to 7,410.87 in Taiwan.

New York equities markets were lower in midday trade, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 1.33 percent to 11,169.7 while the S&P 500 had dropped 1.3 percent to 1,162.3 and the Nasdaq Composite was 1.4 percent lower to 2,433.07.

Crude oil prices were mixed at midday in New York, with West Texas Intermediate crude down 21 cents to $84.95 per barrel, but Brent crude was last reported up 61 cents to $110.76 per barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London.

Gold was lower again at shortly before 12:30 p.m. in New York dropping $3.90 to $1,753.40 per troy ounce, but silver had added $1.14 to $40.35 per troy ounce, while copper was up 8 cents to $4.10 per pound in New York trade and three-month contracts were $161 higher to $9,036 per tonne on the London Metal Exchange.

The gains for copper came on hopes that the US Federal Reserve will provide more help for the US economy, and on the report yesterday that durable goods orders are up in the United States.

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