LONDON MARKETS: FTSE 100 Advances With BP Rising; Manufacturing Report On Deck

By Carla Mozee, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

Ocado, M&S to start talking about tie-up: report

Continue Reading Below

U.K. stocks marched higher Tuesday, with BP PLC gaining following the oil heavyweight's earnings report, ahead of an update from the U.K. manufacturing sector.

The FTSE 100 rose 0.6% to 7,245.28, with only the utilities sector declining modestly. The benchmark last week logged a gain of 1.3% (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/ftse-100-falls-as-barclays-drops-pound-rises-ahead-of-gdp-data-2017-04-28). But for April, the London benchmark lost 1.6%, in part because the pound surged more than 3% against the dollar over the month.

Sterling on Tuesday was buying $1.2885, steady from late Monday in New York, before the release of an update on British manufacturing output. The April data are due at 9:30 a.m. London time, or 4:30 a.m. Eastern Time, and analysts polled by FactSet expect a 54.1 reading from Markit/CIPS.

Trading was closed Monday for a Bank Holiday. This week will be a busy one for investors as they will receive earnings reports, U.K. services-sector data, growth figures from the eurozone and the U.S. jobs report. The Federal Reserve's two-day meeting begins later Tuesday, with its interest rate decision due Wednesday. On Sunday, France will hold its presidential election.

Stock movers: BP PLC shares (BP.LN) (BP.LN) climbed 2.5% after the oil producer swung to a first-quarter profit of $1.4 billion. (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bp-swings-to-profit-2017-05-02)

Continue Reading Below

Shares of Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) (RDSB.LN) were higher after BP's report, up 1.1%. The oil and gas sector contributes a 14% weighting on the FTSE 100, according to FactSet data.

Mining shares were mixed after a private gauge of China's factory activity slowed to a seven-month low in April (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/chinas-factory-output-slows-to-7-month-low-2017-05-01). China is a major buyer of industrial and precious metals.

In the mining sector, Anglo American PLC (AAL.LN) was up 0.3%, Rio Tinto PLC (RIO) (RIO) (RIO) gained 0.3%, and BHP Billiton PLC (BLT.LN) (BHP.AU) (BHP.AU) added 0.3%.

But Antofagasta PLC (ANTO.LN) fell 0.5%. Fresnillo PLC (FRES.LN) declined 2.1%, as did Randgold Resources PLC (RRS.LN) .

On the FTSE 250, Ocado Group PLC (OCDO.LN) shares surged 7.5%. The Telegraph newspaper reported Saturday that the online grocery delivery company and Marks & Spencer Group PLC (MKS.LN) will start discussing a possible tie-up (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/04/29/ms-ocado-plot-food-delivery-shake-up/) that could see M&S begin food-delivery service.

Aberdeen Asset Management PLC (ADN.LN) shares moved up 3.1% after the asset manager said it has completed plans to deliver 70 million pounds ($90.28 million) of annualized cost savings (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/aberdeen-asset-to-log-70-mln-in-cost-savings-2017-05-02). Aberdeen also said business outflows in the second quarter narrowed from the year-earlier period.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

May 02, 2017 04:06 ET (08:06 GMT)