FTSE 100 opened on the front foot as traders await the latest interest rates decision and comments from the US Federal Reserve. London’s leading index jumped 22 points to 6,967 in early trading.
Lloyds Banking Group PLC (LON:LLOY) posted a 26-fold jump in quarterly profits as bad debt charges tumbled. Going forward, the bank expects lower costs, improved net margins and lower bad debts due to the improving economic backdrop in the UK.
J Sainsbury PLC (LON:SBRY) slumped to a full-year loss due to costs related to COVID-19 and strategic changes. Group revenue remained flat because of weak fuel sales, despite good performance of groceries and general merchandise.
Dixons Carphone PLC (LON:DC.) will close permanently its travel business. The retailer does not expect passenger numbers to recover enough to compensate for the cut of airside tax-free shopping in the UK.
Among the small caps, OKYO Pharma (LON:OKYO) said a non-opioid analgesic it is developing has shown pre-clinical potential to treat acute and chronic ocular pain. The topically applied treatment demonstrated a reduced corneal pain response similar to a commonly used oral drug for neuropathic pain.
IXICO PLC (LON:IXI) has won a contract with its largest pharma client to provide its neuroimaging services for a new clinical trial for the most common form of strokes. The trial will be conducted across 50 sites in North America and Europe.
MGC Pharmaceuticals Ltd’s (LON:MXC) Canadian distributor Glow LifeTech has submitted an application to Health Canada to obtain product licences for Covid-19 treatment ArtemiC as a Natural Health Product (NHP). All NHPs must obtain pre-market approval from Health Canada.