FTSE 100 made a steady start led by miners and the big oilers after a decent opening to the week for Asian markets. London’s blue-chip index added 8 in early dealings to 7,103.
ASOS PLC though slumped 15% as Nick Beighton stepped down as chief executive as it unveiled a plan to reach £7bn of annual revenue over the next four years as well as warnings that supply chain problems and rising costs will affect its profits. Beighton has led the online fashion retailer for six years, having been 12 years at the company in total.
Michael Saunders, one of the Bank of England’s interest rate committee, has warned about a much earlier rise in rates than expected due to the recent jump in inflation. Some economists are suggesting a hike before the end of this year is now possible.
Liberty Steel has secured a £50m cash injection that it said will safeguard 660 jobs at its plant in Rotherham. The steelmaker is owned by GFG Alliance which hit trouble when its main lender Greensill Capital collapsed.
Among the small caps, Seeing Machines Ltd (AIM:SEE, OTC:SEEMF) will supply its Guardian driver distraction and fatigue system to Shell. The oil giant has a huge fleet of vehicles covering 500mln kilometres a year.
Talking about partnerships, Oracle Power PLC (AIM:ORCP) has signed a co-operation agreement with PowerChina International Group. The pair will develop a green hydrogen production facility in Pakistan.
Similarly, Feedback PLC (AIM:FDBK) will collaborate with Quest Teleradiology Solutions to incorporate communications platform Bleepa in the radiology sector. Quest will trial it with some of its customers to see if it improves the service.