- FTSE indices opened mildly positive despite a lower Wall St overnight and a mixed Asia market this morning. Traders are looking to Thursday's Federal Open Market Committee statement. So far today direction was being provided by a mixed bag of sectors, with financial stock notable.

Shortly after the open, FTSE 100 was up 3.78 points, or 0.06%, to 6088.37. FTSE 250 was up 8.97, or 0.05%, to 16,934.7. At 8.45am, crude was up less than 1%. Gold was around $1106/oz and copper was about $240/lb. Industrial metals futures were mostly down more than 1%.

Experian (EXPN), up 1.3% to 1048.5p, led a back of blue chips making thin headway. Behind were several banks led by Barclays (BARC), up 0.9% to 256.78, and RBS (RBS). Also up were 3i (III) and Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.). London Stock Exchange (LSE), down 0.42% to 2469.5p, confirmed the sale of UK market data vendor and retail exchange provider Proquote to ASX-quoted IRESS.

Tesco (TSCO), up 0.42% to 179.2p, gained traction after yesterday's sell-off, but rivals Sainsbury (SBRY), down 1.66% to 225.8p, and Morrisons (MRW), down 1.17% to 155.95p, continued under the cosh. Consumer goods titans Reckitt Benckiser (RB.) and Unilever (ULVR) also rose. Beverages specialists, tobacco outfits and property also tiptoed higher.

More than 30 blue chips fell, these led by Kingfisher's (KGF) fall of 2.65% to 350.75p as its H1 statutory sales and pretax profit ebbed, although its 'ONE' plan was progressing. Miners responded to easing metals prices with Glencore (GLEN) down 1.95% to 125.4p and the top-10 heavyweight fallers including another six metals burrowers.


Mosman Oil & Gas (MSMN), up 21.23% to 7.88p, has signed an agreement regarding its proposed acquisition of an up to 70% interest in the South Taranaki Energy Project (STEP) assets in New Zealand by selling a 2% royalty to Canadian based Ridge Royalty Corp for NZ$4m.

Hydrogen Group (HYDG), off 19.81% to 42.5p, said H1 net fee income (NFI) fell 30.8% to £10.1m. The sustained low oil price saw oil and gas NFI fall 62% to £1.7m, from £4.5m. Vipera (VIP), up 12.5% to 4.5p, booked an H1 pretax loss of 0.53m euros, from a loss of 0.32m euros. Revenue was lower, but Vipera was pleased with its 'strong progress.'

Teathers Financial (TEA) investee company Teathers Financial Software Ltd has signed its first broker licence agreement with FCA-regulated Shard Capital Partners to launch the first crowd-equity App powered by its technology platform. TEA rose 19.24% to 3.13p.

Sareum (SAR), up 14.29% to 0.28p, said the US Patent and Trademark Office and the European Patent Office have issued notifications that patents will be granted for inventions associated with its Aurora+FLT3 Kinase Inhibitor Programme.


Ocado (OCDO), up 4.13% to 328.95p, has improved its Q3 group sales to £272.0m, from £231.9m a year ago. The 12 weeks to Aug. 9 saw gross sales (retail) rise to £252.0m, from £218.5m. Average orders per week rose to 190,000, from 163,000.

K3 Business Technology (KBT), up 3.96% to 288.5p, said its FY revenues rose 16% to £83.43m, with recurring revenues up 13% to £39.85m. Adjusted pre-tax profits gained 9% to £7.22m. Dividend was up 20% to 1.50p a share.

Northacre (NTA), down 3.39% to 57p, has swung to an H1 pretax loss of £0.35m, from a profit of £13,000. Group revenue was £1.99m, from £3.12m. NetScientific (NSCI), up 2.99% to 172.5p, said key portfolio companies Vortex BioSciences Inc has been granted a critical patent on its core technology in the US.

Gateley (GTLY), up 3.03% to 102p, has posted a FY adjusted pro-forma pretax profit of £9.8m, up 32.4% on last time. Revenue gained 11.5% to £60.9m. Pro-forma total dividend yield was up 35% to 5.4%, from 4%.

Panther Securities (PNS), up 2.84% to 362.5p, has lifted its H1 pretax profit to £3.96m, from £3.34m. Revenue was £7.3m, from £7.5m. It anticipated a minimum dividend of 12p a share for the FY.

Other stocks in the news included Central Rand Gold (CRND), PowerHouse (PHE), IQE (IQE), Focusrite (TUNE), Porvair (PRV), Global Market (GMC), Parity Group (PTY), Bango (BGO) and Rockhopper (RKH).

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