FTSE 100 watch: Footsie little changed as focus stays on company updates

on Jul 21, 2017

The UK benchmark index has been little changed this Friday, with investors continuing to focus on company news amid the ongoing earnings season. Paddy Power Betfair (LON:PPB) meanwhile has fallen deep into the red as Investec lowered its stance on the stock.

As of 12:29 BST, the Footsie had lost 1.89 points to stand 0.03 percent lower at 7,485.98, having traded above the 7,500-point mark earlier in the session. The blue-chip index remains on track to post more than one percent gain this week.
In the absence of major macroeconomic news, investors have focused on company updates, including by Vodafone (LON:VOD), which today posted a rise in quarterly revenue and said that it was confident about its full-year outlook.

“Vodafone has never been a growth play, it’s all about the dividend,” Ken Odeluga, market analyst at City Index, commented, as quoted by Reuters, adding that while there was “nothing here to kick-start a higher quantum of growth in the medium-term, the efficiency programme and the cash generation plans look to have remained on track and that should mean that the company is in a position to carry out its plans to increase the dividend”. Vodafone’s shares are currently changing hands one percent higher at 227.15p.

At the other end of the spectrum has been Paddy Power Betfair whose shares have been sold off after Investec downgraded its rating on the group from ‘buy’ to ‘sell’ and trimmed its valuation on the stock from 10,000p to 6,970p. Sharecast quoted the analysts as citing lower forecasts and a deteriorating regulatory outlook in the UK and Australia. Paddy Power Betfair’s share price is 1.87 percent down at 7,443.25p.
**The FTSE 100 was 0.06 percent down at 7,483.66 points as of 12:46 BST on Friday, 21 July 2017.**