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FTSE 100 Live 14 June: Tesco sales boost ahead of AGM, Crest Nicholson updates on Bellway bid

FTSE 100 Live (Evening Standard)
FTSE 100 Live (Evening Standard)

Tesco shareholders are today having their say on the £9.9 million pay package awarded to boss Ken Murphy.

Ahead of the AGM in Welwyn Garden City, the supermarket reported more robust trading figures.

In the housebuilding sector, Crest Nicholson has revealed its response to a takeover approach by rival Bellway.

FTSE 100 Live Friday

  • Tesco posts sales rise ahead of AGM

  • Crest Nicholson backs standalone future

  • Raspberry Pi shares extend strong start

City Comment: Archie Norman is right -- time to unleash our pension funds

11:18 , Daniel O'Boyle

About 33 years ago Robert Maxwell fell off his boat. (Or jumped, or was pushed, if you prefer.)

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The human pain he left in his wake was quite something, and continues.

After he died, one of the things that emerged was that he had embezzled hundreds of millions of pounds from the pension funds of his publishing empire.

Back then, the rules on pensions were, erm, a bit slack.

Read more here

Raspberry Pi extends strong start, BAE and Rolls lower in FTSE 100

10:25 , Graeme Evans

Raspberry Pi shares have risen another 14% or 58.8p to 470.8p after unconditional dealings commenced today.

The low cost computer maker is now up by about 68% from its initial price of 280p in Tuesday’s much-anticipated flotation.

The interest in Raspberry Pi, which is now valued at about £900 million, was one of the few highlights in a dour London session.

The FTSE 100 index retreated 13.52 points to 8150.15, while in Europe the CAC 40 lost another 1.5% amid more selling of France’s biggest banks.

London investors opted to take some profit, leaving Rolls-Royce and BAE Systems down 3% or 12.4p at 455.4p and 34p lower at 1349p respectively.

The biggest risers included BT Group, up another 2.25p to 137.25p after Wednesday’s disclosure of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s 3.2% stake.

Packaging firm Smurfit Kappa rose 44p to 3584p after receiving shareholder approval for next month’s merger with US-based WestRock.

Britons' year-out inflation expectations fall below 3%

09:57 , Daniel O'Boyle

Brits are increasingly confident that inflation is coming back under control, as they now expect prices to rise by less than 3% over the coming year, according to a Bank of England survey.

The Bank’s latest Inflation Attitudes Survey shows that the public now thinks the inflation rate a year from now will be just 2.8%, down from 3% when the survey was last conducted in February, though still ahead of the Bank’s target. It’s the first time the median answer was below 3% since August 2021.

The public then thinks inflation will dip to 2.6% in 2026. However, the longer-term picture is less positive, with the public still expecting inflation of 3.1% five years from now.

Faith in the Bank of England also appears to be improving, as the Bank’s net favourability ticked up to minus 4%. It was as low as minus 21% last year.

Supermarkets ready for football fans stocking up to watch Euros at home

09:12 , Daniel O'Boyle

Supermarkets say they are ready for one of their busiest periods of the year as football fans stock the fridge to watch the Euros from home.

Tesco said it expected to sell 33 million packs of beer and cider over the coming month but is also predicting it will sell 5.5 million bottles and cans of “no” and “low” alcohol options – a record for a major football tournament.

The supermarket said sales figures showed beer tastes had changed considerably since the 2006 World Cup in Germany, when 80% of all beer and cider sold in the retail trade during the tournament was lager.

Read more here

Tesco CEO's £9.9m pay deal gets AGM scrutiny

08:56 , Graeme Evans

Ken Murphy’s £9.9 million pay package for running Britain’s biggest supermarket chain will be in the spotlight at the company’s AGM this morning.

The big jump in his total remuneration from £4.4 million the year before has been driven by Murphy’s first vesting of long-term incentives since joining the company in 2020.

The share awards contributed £4.9 million, in addition to a near maximum annual bonus of £3.4 million. Murphy’s current base salary is £1.5 million.

Tesco shares higher as FTSE 100 struggles, Crest Nicholson jumps 10%

08:26 , Graeme Evans

Tesco shares have risen 1.8p to 304.3p after the supermarket giant reiterated its full-year guidance in today’s trading update.

The performance came in another weak session for the FTSE 100 index, which is 8.14 points lower at 8155.53 after falling 0.6% yesterday.

In the FTSE 250, Crest Nicholson shares have jumped 10% or 20.6p to 233.4p amid the details of Bellway’s recent takeover approach worth the equivalent of 253p a share. Bellway shares are down 3% or 68p to 2650p.

Raspberry Pi shares have jumped 12% or 48p to 460p on their first day of unconditional dealings. They were initially priced at 280p in Tuesday’s IPO.

Crest Nicholson 'remains confident' in standalone prospects amid Bellway bid

07:47 , Daniel O'Boyle

Housebuilder Crest Nicholson says it “remains confident” in its standalone prospects, after larger rival Bellway revealed details of a takeover bid yesterday.

Bellway had submitted a bid last month, which was rejected. Yesterday, after Crest’s shares plunged on the back of disappointing results, Bellway revealed that it had made a bid.

The offer would give Crest shareholders 0.094 new Bellway shares for every Crest share. That would mean they would hold 17.1% of the new business and suggests a valuation of around £650 million.

But Crest Nicholson said that “significantly undervalues” the business.

It said: “As outlined in its half year results on 13 June 2024 for the period ended 30 April 2024, Crest Nicholson remains confident in its standalone prospects, in particular given conclusion of the review of provisions for completed development sites supported by external consultants, its highly attractive land portfolio and the new leadership of Martyn Clark.”

Bellway has until 11 July to decide whether to make another firm bid.

Tesco enjoys another sales bump

07:18 , Simon English

Tesco today insisted it is still the cheapest full-line grocer, fending off competition from Lidl and Aldi to record another rise in sales.

In the 13 weeks to May 25 sales rose 3.6% to £14.3 billion. In the UK alone they were up an even stronger 4.6%.

That suggests the consumer is more resilient than some analysts had feared, and that Tesco is getting its price offer right.

Chief executive Ken Murphy said: “We continue to be the cheapest full-line grocer and are the most competitive we've ever been, with our value, product quality and service driving better brand perception and customer satisfaction. Our market share reflects this, growing more than at any other time in the past two years, with customers switching to us from other retailers, shopping with us more often and with more in their baskets.”

Tesco’s market share is up a little to 27.6%. It claims to have been the cheapest of the major grocers for 19 consecutive quarters thanks to its Aldi Price Match, Clubcard Prices and Low Everyday Prices.

FTSE 100 steadies as S&P 500 run continues, Bank of Japan holds rates

07:15 , Graeme Evans

The S&P 500 index and Nasdaq posted fresh records last night as they continue to outperform the Dow Jones Industrial Average and European markets.

The FTSE 100 index finished 0.6% lower while the recent bout of political uncertainty caused benchmarks in Paris and Frankfurt to slump by 2%.

The Dow Jones fell 0.2% but the growth-focused S&P 500 and Nasdaq finished in positive territory, despite the Federal Reserve this week signalling just one rate cut in 2024.

European markets are set for a steadier session today, with the FTSE 100 index poised for a rise of about 33 points to 8196.

The Nikkei 225 closed 0.3% higher after the yen fell to a six week low on the back of the Bank of Japan’s decision to keep short-term interest rates near 0.1%. The bank raised rates for the first time since 2007 in March.

Recap: Yesterday's top stories

06:48 , Simon Hunt

Good morning from the Standard City desk.

London’s main financial markets dropped further on Thursday amid weak trading for housebuilders and oil and gas firms.

Housing developers were among the main fallers after sentiment in the sector was knocked by Crest Nicholson’s profit warning.

Meanwhile, oil and gas firms with operations in the North Sea saw their shares fall back after the Labour Party confirmed it will not issue new oil and gas licences for the region if it gets into government.

The FTSE 100 finished 51.81 points, or 0.63%, lower to end the day at 8,163.67.

Across Europe, the main financial markets were again in the red as election-related uncertainty continued to put pressure on French stocks.

The Cac 40 in France ended 1.99% lower and the German Dax index was down 1.97% at the close.

~

Here’s a summary of our top stories from yesterday: