The FTSE is in positive territory this morning, up 20 points in early trading following a positive US session and some after-hours earnings reported from some big tech names.
The Royal Bank of Scotland is the FTSE’s biggest gainer today, up 2% in early trading, due to higher than expected Q3 profits which came in at £1.245bn, comfortably beating the expected £1bn, while, its capital adequacy ratio managed to get above its 15% level. It wasn’t all rosy though, as impairments were higher than expected, but this hasn’t been enough to dampen interest.
Accendo Markets analyst, Mike van Dulken commented on the results, “It may still be a case of “next year Rodney”. However, given where the bank has come from in terms of travails, this morning’s positive reception to the Q3 update suggests shareholders still of the view that, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not that much longer to wait for those long lost dividends.”
“Resumption at LLOY has already helped revive interest in the shares, fuelling a 55% bounce from Brexit lows.”
“But this pales into comparison to RBS which continues to outperform, not far from doubling over the same period and up over 20% since September’s sell-off versus a mere 12% rebound for its peer.”
It was the mining sector this morning that was seen to be dragging back the FTSE this morning with Anglo-American, Antofagasta, Glecore, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton all losing ground in early trading.
Over in the US, equity markets closed mixed on Thursday as the Dow Jones rallied back towards record highs thanks to American Express and Dow DuPont strength, while rail company Union Pacific led the S&P500 0.1% higher.
The Nasdaq closed lower by 1%, but its fortunes could change significantly later today after Amazon, Alphabet and Microsoft – the 2nd, 3rd and 5th largest companies in the world – all recorded outperformance for the third quarter after the market had closed.