StockMarketWire.com - Weakness in the pound amid strong polling for the Brexit Party ahead of European elections saw the FTSE 100 swerve the larger drops faced by other European markets amid trade war fears.

With little sign of a solution to the tensions between the US and China, Germany's DAX was down 0.7%, while the FTSE was off 0.12% by midday.

Shares in mobile telecoms giant Vodafone fell 4.4% on weekend press reports that it will cut its dividend.

LARGE AND MID CAP FALLERS

British Gas owner Centrica gained 1.7% after it stuck to its annual guidance, despite facing another challenging first quarter that many had expected would result in a downgrade.

The company also announced that it would provide a more detailed strategic update when it releases its interim results in late July.

Metro Bank slumped 5.3%, even as it attempted to reassure investors about its capital position by announcing that its plan to raise £350m from a share issue was 'well advanced'.

The challenger bank over the weekend had denied 'false' claims on social media about its financial position.

Funeral firm Dignity dropped 6.4% owing to a profit warning blamed on significantly lower death rates.

Bus and train company FirstGroup was little changed after it revealed activist investor Coast Capital Management had called a shareholder meeting to try and roll its board.

Technical product supplier Diploma fell 1.1%, despite beating its annual revenue guidance, as it also noted 'early signs' slower activity in its industrial seals segment.

Plastics company Victrex softened 2.7% after it booked a 21% fall in first-half profit, owing to weakness its automotive and consumer electronics divisions.

Engineering group Ricardo shed 0.3% on announcing that it had agreed to acquire Australia-based rail system company Transport Engineering from private owners Stephen and Alia Boyd for $53.6m (£28.9m).

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Education services firm Wey Education was up 42.5% as it reported a 54.7% increase in first half turnover.


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