By Patrick Munnelly, Market Strategist, Tickmill
At Tuesday’s close, the FTSE 100 saw modest gains of 0.20%.
This comes as most major risk assets experienced a surge, following cooler-than-expected US inflation data. The data has led to increased expectations in the market that the Federal Reserve might be finished with raising interest rates.
The FTSE 100’s marginal gains reflect the broader sentiment in the financial markets at that moment, influenced by macroeconomic data and central bank policies, UK wages experienced a slight deceleration in their growth rate, although they continued to hover close to their record pace. This development provides little relief for the Bank of England in addressing its concerns about inflation pressures. The persistence of wages near record levels suggests that the labour market remains tight, contributing to inflationary concerns. The Bank of England closely monitors wage growth as it is a key factor in determining the overall inflationary environment. The central bank’s apprehension about inflation pressures may persist if wage growth remains elevated, impacting its monetary policy decisions.
DCC half year numbers impress
On the positive side of the ledger shares of DCC [LON:DCC], a support service provider, surged by 12.4%, making it the top percentage gainers on the FTSE 100 index.
This significant increase followed the company’s release of higher half-year (HY) adjusted operating profit. DCC reported an HY adjusted operating profit of £247.6 million, up from £221.2 million the previous year. However, revenue for the period amounted to £9.61 billion ($11.82 billion), down from £10.84 billion in the same period last year. Despite the challenging macro environment, DCC’s resilience and diverse business contributed to its continued performance. The CEO, Donal Murphy, emphasised the company’s ability to navigate the volatile market conditions. In addition to the positive financial results, DCC announced the acquisition of Progas GmbH for an enterprise value of approximately 160 million euros ($171.42 million). The company also increased its interim dividend by 5% to 63.04p per share.
Vodafone reports revenue decline
On the negative side of the ledger shares of telecoms company Vodafone [LON:VOD] fell by 5.5% following the release of its half-year (H1) financial results. The company reported a 4.3% decline in H1 revenue to 21.94 billion euros ($23.38 billion). This decrease was attributed to adverse foreign exchange rate movements and the disposal of Vantage Towers, Vodafone Hungary, and Vodafone Ghana in the previous financial year. Both revenue and operating profits are moving in an unfavourable direction for Vodafone, reflecting recent disposals and structural challenges. The company reported an adjusted free cash outflow of 1.5 billion euros in the first half of the year, compared to 513 million euros reported in the same period last year. Despite these challenges, Vodafone reiterated its forecast for the fiscal year 2024, expecting adjusted earnings to be broadly flat at around 13.3 billion euros. The company highlighted that revenue has returned to growth in Germany in Q2. However, the stock is down approximately 9.2% year-to-date. The market’s reaction suggests concerns about the overall financial performance and strategic challenges facing Vodafone.