- Banks, telcos and miners were among the worst performing FTSE 100 stocks on Wednesday, serving to drag the blue chip index down 0.5% to 7,668. Royal Bank of Scotland fell 1.3% to 247.15p, Vodafone dipped 1.8% to 174.52p, and Rio Tinto fell 2.5% to £41.52.

Mainland Europe fared slightly better with a 0.01% gain in the Paris Cac 40 index. Asia was stronger with a near-1% gain in Hong Kong's Hang Seng index and a 0.5% gain in Japan's Nikkei 225 index.

On the currencies front, the pound was flat against the dollar at $1.3147. Oil prices moved up 0.8% to $74 for the Brent Crude product. Gold slipped 0.3% to $1,228.


Britain's biggest free-to-air commercial broadcaster ITV announced plans to launch a direct-to-consumer proposition, putting it in direct competition with Netflix and Amazon.

The news came alongside what the company hailed as 'fantastic' first half with hit shows like 'Love Island' helping revenue to rise 8% to £1.59bn. ITV said interim profits rose to £265m from £259m last year while total advertising sales rose 2% in the six months to 30 June, with 48% growth in online.

But management enthusiasm wasn't matched by investors, with ITV's share price only managing a 0.3% rise to 171.3p.

Drugs developer Indivior saw its share price crash 15.2% to 282.8p after suffering from a rival launching a generic version of its opioid addiction treatment. The company posted its second straight drop in quarterly profit and said the adverse impact on its full year net revenue could be $25m or significantly more.

Vodafone slipped 0.4% to 176.94p thanks to a slowdown in first quarter organic service revenue. This was largely because of tough trading in Italy and Spain.

Vodafone's sales fell 4.9% to €10.9bn for the three months to the 30 June with the group also blaming adverse currency moves and the adoption of different accounting standards. Mobile data traffic soared 57% while Vodafone confirmed that its preferred measure of full year profits would rise between 1% and 5%.

Budget airline Wizz Air trimmed its full year capacity growth forecast from 20% to 18% as it expected disruptions related to European air traffic control issues to continue into autumn. Its shares fell 4.3% to £34.05.

Africa-focused explorer Tullow Oil said it would use its $401m first half free cash flow to pay down debt and invest rather than pay a dividend. The news didn't trouble investors as the stock rose 3.8% to 225.3p.


The World Cup and the recent heatwave helped to boost sales at pubs group Marston's, although progress was modest. The company reported like-for-like sales 0.9% ahead in the 16 weeks to 21 July. The shares dipped 1.9% to 96p.

Esports group Gfinity shot up 6% to 13.12p after striking a content and marketing partnership with Domino's. It was also good news for shareholders in APC Technology as the electronics business raised £2.5m at a small premium to last night's closing price in order to buy Aspen, a premium distributor of electronic components.

Alliance Pharma scaled back large share price losses at the market open to trade only 3.6% down at 90.6p just before midday. Investors were spooked by its trading update which said profits would increase at a lower rate than sales due to marketing activities.

Finally, automotive engineer Ricardo took a knock after saying full year pre-tax profit would be towards the lower end of analyst forecasts as a result of weak UK orders. Its shares traded 9.8% lower at 844p.

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