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FTSE 100 at the close: Spirax Sarco Engineering, Rentokil Initial

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By Patrick Munnelly, Market Strategist, Tickmill

On Thursday, the FTSE 100 index saw a decline of 1.17%, driven by a surge in government bond yields and ongoing tensions in the Middle East, which left investors adopting a risk-averse stance.

Treasury yields reached 16-year highs, with anticipation building around Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s forthcoming speech in New York. Investors were eager to gain insights into the potential trajectory of interest rates, which added to market uncertainties.


Furthermore, the heavyweight oil and gas sectoral index experienced a 0.2% decrease, mirroring the downward trend in oil prices.

Industrial metal mining stocks faced a 0.2% decline too, as copper prices slipped, highlighting the interconnectedness of global economic factors that influence the markets.

Spirax Sarco Engineering CEO buys shares

Sitting at the top of the FTSE 100 table today is Spirax Sarco Engineering [LON:SPX], up 2.4% as investors take the lead from the CEO who recently announced personal share purchases.

Admiral [LON:ADM] is also up 2.4% after another motor insurance group, Sabre Insurance Group plc, raised its full-year guidance due to higher-than-expected premium growth in the third quarter. Sabre increased its 2023 year-on-year growth guidance to between 20% and 25%, and maintained its profitability outlook.

Rentokil Initial hit by prospect of weakening US demand

Leading the charge lower, Rentokil Initial [LON:RTO], the pest control company based in the UK, saw its stock price plummet today by 18.6%.

The decline was prompted by Rentokil’s acknowledgment of a weakened consumer demand environment in North America.

Rentokil Initial anticipates that their North American full-year performance will be slightly below their previous expectations due to uncertainties in the current market conditions.

They expect the annual adjusted operating margin for North America to fall within the range of 18.5% to 19%, a reduction from their earlier guidance of approximately 19.5%.

Notably, the company’s quarterly revenue saw significant growth of 59.9%, primarily attributed to merger and acquisition activities, including the acquisition of Terminix.

Despite the recent decline, Rentokil Initial’s stock had performed well, with a year-to-date increase of 17% as of the most recent close.

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This article does not constitute investment advice. Do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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