FTSE 100 movers: Domestic plays gain, Burberry slumps on update
London's FTSE 100 was down 0.3% to 7,126.54 in afternoon trade, slipping into negative territory for the year as investors continued to mull Theresa May's plan for a snap general election.
UK domestic companies were among the standout performers, with Sainsbury, EasyJet, Lloyds, and Next all racking up healthy gains.
Hargreaves Lansdown analyst Nicholas Hyett attributed the gains to the rise in sterling on Tuesday after Theresa May announced plans for a snap general election in June.
"The announcement of an election certainly seems to be being viewed as a positive for the UK economy. Presumably that’s on the basis that with what is expected to be an enhanced majority, the government will be better placed to handle the complexities and political headwinds of the Brexit negotiations," Hyett said.
RBS was in the black after Chancellor Philip Hammond said the government was prepared to sell its stake in the bank at a loss.
On the downside, luxury brand Burberry was out of fashion after it reported a drop in total underlying revenue in the second half as an "exceptional" performance in the UK was offset by efforts to improve brand positioning in the US and in the beauty business.
For the six months to the end of March, total revenue was down 1% on an underlying basis to £1.61bn, but up 14% at reported currency.
Meanwhile, retail revenue was up 3% on an underlying basis to £1.27bn, but up 19% at reported FX, with comparable sales up 3%.
Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) 267.80p 5.18%
easyJet (EZJ) 1,114.00p 4.70%
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) 233.10p 3.74%
Next (NXT) 4,313.00p 3.01%
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 64.03p 2.94%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 830.00p 2.91%
Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW) 234.50p 2.81%
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 1,354.00p 2.73%
Old Mutual (OML) 193.70p 2.32%
Taylor Wimpey (TW.) 203.00p 2.22%
Burberry Group (BRBY) 1,599.00p -6.00%
Fresnillo (FRES) 1,554.00p -2.39%
Royal Dutch Shell 'B' (RDSB) 2,085.00p -1.88%
Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) 800.50p -1.84%
Randgold Resources Ltd. (RRS) 7,240.00p -1.76%
Imperial Brands (IMB) 3,752.50p -1.73%
Mediclinic International (MDC) 726.50p -1.69%
RSA Insurance Group (RSA) 574.50p -1.46%
Royal Dutch Shell 'A' (RDSA) 2,020.00p -1.44%
Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK) 1,854.00p -1.44%