StockMarketWire.com - FTSE indices vaulted out of the red and into the blue to midday with supermarkets queuing at the top end of the blue-chip index as the market embraced Sainsbury's Q1 update. Miners also marched higher as China's central bank picked the nation's economy to improve in H2.

To noon, FTSE 100 was up 19.15 points, or 0.28%, to 6772.95. FTSE 250 was up 89.92, or 0.5%, to 17,929.7. At 11.35am, crude was up as US inventories looked set to drop more. WTI rose 2% to $61.34/bbl. Brent rose 1.62% to $65.93/bbl. European bourses were firmer in another business-as-usual day for Greece debt renegotiations.

Sainsbury (SBRY), up 4.82% to 261p, said its Q1 like-for-like retail sales including fuel were down 3.7%, but excluding fuel slipped 2.1%. Sainsbury noted growing volume and transactions as it delivered its turnaround strategy. This had read-across value for rivals Tesco (TSCO), up 4.22% to 210.63p, and Morrisons (MRW), up 3.62% to 177.6p. M&S (MKS) fell 0.23% to 553.75p.

Miners traced Anglo American (AAL), up 2.14% to 1006.5p, as People's Bank of China cut its forecast annual inflation rate to 1.4%, from 2.2%. Lower interest rates were seen helping to shore up economic growth in coming months. BHP Billiton (BLT) and Rio Tinto (RIO) benefitted, too. Also up was Asia-focused bank Standard Chartered (STAN), rising 4.67% to 1082.25p.

Barely 25 blue chips were lower. Weir Group (WEIR) led the way with a 1.93% slip to 1885p as it said the downturn in US shale activity could be more damaging than the market thought. Meantime, other risers included house builder Persimmon (PSN), retailer Dixon Carphone (DC.), oil major Shell (RDSA) and pharma Astrazeneca (AZN).

BIGGER MOVERS

Reach4entertainment (R4E) gains 74.04% to 2.48p as it agrees a deal with Allied Irish Banks to restructure and pay off a £14.8m loan facility. It hoped to replace it with a cheaper facility. Dialight (DIA) fell 35.1% to 483.5p after warning FY profits would massively miss expectations. The market had been expecting £22m of pretax profit on £195m revenues.

Toumaz (TMZ) jumped 16.8% to 4.38p as it signs a Cast-for-Audio co-development agreement with web search giant Google (GOOG:NDQ). Motive Television (MTV), up 25% to 0.01p, said the first TabletTV US and UK apps for Android devices are available for download on the Google Playstore.

1pm (OPM), up 20.54% to 67.5p, has experienced a fifth consecutive year of strong organic growth. It said FY results will show further increases in both revenue and profits compared to last year. Pretax profit would be significantly above current market views.

ECONOMIC NEWS

UK industrial production rose 1.2% year-on-year in April, ahead of an estimate for a 0.6% rise. Data from Office for National Statistics showed the previous figure was unrevised at 0.7%. UK manufacturing production fell a seasonally adjusted 0.4% in April, against a forecast rise of 0.1% and following a 0.4% rise in March.

Meantime, France's industrial production fell to -0.9% in May, from -0.3% in April. A rise to 0.4% was anticipated. Italy's industrial production for April was -0.3%, against an expected +0.3%. Stateside, the Federal Budget Balance is out tonight.

LONDON HIGHLIGHTS

Ensor Group (ESR), up 10.67% to 98.5p, said FY operating profits rose 84% to £3.4m after its H2 exceeded expectations. Total revenues rose 18% to £36.1m and the group says the current year has started well.

Shoe Zone (SHOE), also recovering from an earnings alert, was up 7.36% to 175p on reassuring H1 results, including news of positive progress with online and store portfolio initiatives, as well as a soothing current trading statement.

Karelian Diamond Resources (KDR), up 6.67% to 1.2p, said five further pits along strike from its original discovery of kimberlite in the Kuhmo area have all intersected kimberlite. Cairn Homes (CRN) has priced its IPO of 400m shares at 1 euro each. It expected to raise about 384.9m euros net proceeds. It is trading at 1.06 euros.

Boohoo.com (BOO) bounced 5.31% higher to 27.38p on a better-than-expected Q1 trading statement. Its growth strategy is back on track following a January profit warning, with sales momentum picking up in the UK, the key near-term growth driver.

Thalassa (THAL), down 4.13% to 58p, has swung to a FY pretax loss of $12.23m, from a profit of $4.96m. OneSavings Bank (OSB) fell 4.96% to 304.13p on management proposing to sell £5.5m worth of their shares to institutions. The price has not been disclosed. Best of the Best (BOTB) rose 4.96% to 137.5p after reporting FY pretax profit of £0.81m, up from £0.45m.

Other stocks in the news included Good Energy (GOOD), Sopheon (SPE), Flybe (FLYB), ServicePower Technologies (SVR), Amur Minerals (AMC), Tricorn (TCN), Utilitywise (UTW), Soco International (SIA) and Afren (AFR).




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