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Thursday 29th of October 2009
October 27, 2009    

BP leads London market on quarterly results

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by Elaine Frei
BP leads London markets on quarterly results

Equities markets were mixed in Europe Tuesday as the oil sector saw gains but miners declined on demand concerns and banks were down on worries that institutions that received government help could be told to sell some units by the European Commission after Dutch bank ING Group (Euronext: INGA) was forced to break up.

The FTSE 100 added 0.18 percent to 5,200.97 in London, while the FTSE 250 was down 9,141.28.

Oil company BP (LSE: BP) did the best in London and on the 100 as it added 4.81 percent as it reported that third quarter profits dropped by almost 50 percent but were still better than had been anticipated, leading the sector higher, including a gain of 2.08 percent for Royal Dutch Shell’s B shares (LSE: RDSB).

Retailers were also mostly higher, led by Game Group (LSE: GMG) with a gain of 4.55 percent in the 250, where Debenhams (LSE: DEB) added 3.37 percent while Home Retail Group (LSE: HOME) added 2.71 percent on the 100 after Barclays began coverage of the retailer with an “overweight” rating.

GlaxoSmithKline (LSE: GSK) added 2.15 percent and led the pharmaceuticals sector higher ahead of quarterly results, due tomorrow, on the news that a leukemia drug it developed with a Dutch firm has secured approval to be sold in the United States.

Royal Bank of Scotland (LSE: RBS) had the worst day in London as it dropped 8.14 percent, followed by a decline of 6.16 percent for Lloyds Banking Group (LSE: LLOY).

The mining sector was lower with the exception of Gem Diamonds (LSE: GEMD), which added 0.28 percent, as Hochschild Mining (LSE: HOC) turned in the worst performance on the 250 and in the sector as it fell 6.67 percent.

The FSTE Eurofirst 300 was 0.38 percent higher to 1,000.32 while the IBEX added 0.1 percent to 11,634 but the CAC-40 was down 0.01 percent to 3,743.94 and the Dax dropped 0.13 percent to 5,635.02.

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region were lower on the session.

The Nikkei 225 fell 1.45 percent to 10,212.46 while the Topix index was down 1.67 percent to 895.48 and the Mothers market dropped 0.7 percent to 447.04.

Shippers and traders were lower in Tokyo, with shippers falling on lowered income forecasts.

Nippon Yusen (TYO: 9101) and Mitsui OSK (TYO: 9104) each were 2.5 percent lower while Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (TYO: 9107) was down 6.4 percent.

Traders were lower on declines in oil prices as Marubeni Corporation (TYO: 8002) fell 3.9 percent, Mitsui and Company (TYO: 8031) was down 4.9 percent and Mitsubishi Corporation (TYO: 8058) dropped 5.5 percent.

Taiwan’s Taiex was down 0.14 percent to 7,657.34 while the Kospi fell 0.46 percent to 1,649.53 in South Korea, and the Straits Times Index was 0.81 percent lower to 2,694.5.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX200 was down 1.59 percent to 4,753.5 while the Sydney Ordinaries dropped 1.61 percent to 4,754.9.

The Hang Seng fell 1.86 percent to 22,169.59 while India’s Sensex was down 2.31 percent to 16,353.4 and the Shanghai Composite dropped 2.83 percent to 22,169.59.

Wall Street was mixed in early afternoon trade, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.09 percent at just past 1:30 p.m. in New York, but at the same time the Nasdaq Composite was 1.28 percent lower to 2,114.49 and the S&P 500 was down 0.39 percent to 1,062.82.

The Dow was helped by gains for oil companies after BP’s quarterly results, but the Nasdaq was hurt by a negative third-quarter report and a disappointing forecast for fourth-quarter sales from Chinese internet search engine Baidu (NAS: BIDU).

Crude oil prices were up, but by less than 10 cents over Monday’s close, in afternoon trade in New York while metals prices were lower.

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