Buyers crept back into selected telecom, computer-related and financial shares, presumably after tak...
Buyers crept back into selected telecom, computer-related and financial shares, presumably after taking the view that the recent slump is overdone. This pushed the FTSE 100 moderately higher. Even so, the rise looks fragile without US markets open and thin UK trading volumes.
Despite today's buying optimism there's a growing consensus amongst brokers that equity prices still have some way to fall before they will move to overweight them.
The FTSE 100 added 30.1 points to 5656 and the technology biased techMark advanced 33.25 to 2169.83.
Many of yesterday's worst hit FTSE 100 constituents bounced back today with Energis up 25p to 350p, Celltech gained 82p to 1212p and Colt Telecom added 47p to 985p.
Even today's familiar dose of corporate warnings failed to upset markets. Yesterday's rumours proved half true as telecom bellwether Nokia admitted that global mobile phone sales growth in the first quarter will be about 10% less than its forecasts of between 25% to 30%. Despite this Nokia said its profit forecast will remain the same. Nokia shares duly gained more than 10%.
Shares in tiddler stock European Telecom slumped to a record low after the telecom group confessed its system development costs had exceeded expectations. To worsen matters, its 50% share of the losses at Global Telematics also rocked in beyond expectations. No surprise then that the group expects to report a significant loss for the year as well as a spread of redundancies. Shares plummeted 14.5p to 24.5p.
NetBenefit shares also dived to an all time low after the internet services business unveiled a pretty dire set of interim results. Losses rocketed to £6.6m compared to £473,000 last year. Ominously, the group's sales are steadying and monthly cashflow, starting next month, will come down to a break-even level. Shares tumbled 12.5p to 45p.
By Andy Wild
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