FTSE 100 watch: Footsie steady as investors eye US-China trade developments

FTSE 100 watch: Footsie steady as investors eye US-China trade developments

The UK benchmark index has climbed higher in today’s session, holding steady as investors await further trade developments between the US and China. In individual FTSE 100 movers, DS Smith (LON:SMDS) is outperforming the broader market after announcing the disposal of its Plastics division and updating on trading.

FTSE 100 holds steady

As of 12:33 GMT, the Footsie had added 22.96 points to stand 0.32 percent higher at 7,206.39. A gain in tobacco stocks is supporting the blue-chip index after it emerged that US Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who was aiming to curb use of flavoured e-cigarettes, was stepping down next month. Shares in British American Tobacco (LON:BATS) are 3.72 percent better off at 3,008.50p, while Imperial Brands (LON:IMB) is 1.16 percent higher at 2,606.38p.

Gains in the Footsie, however, remain capped as investors await fresh news over the US-China trade relations. CNBC reports that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had said yesterday that he thought that Washington and Beijing were ‘on the cusp’ of reaching a deal.

Individual Footsie movers

In individual Footsie movers, DS Smith is outperforming the broader market after reporting that it had reached agreement to sell the Plastics division to Olympus Partners for an enterprise value of $585 million, and further said that its trading had continued to be strong in the period since November. DS Smith’s share price is 4.88 percent higher at 366.14p.

Legal & General Group (LON:LGEN), however, is 4.12 percent down at 274.40p, as the company disclosed that its profit after tax and return on equity had fallen last year. 

The FTSE 100 was 0.30 percent up at 7,205.27 points as of 12:54 GMT on Wednesday, 06 March 2019.

By Alice Young
Alice joined the Invezz team after motherhood convinced her to make a career change from actuary-ing. She brings a forensic eye for detail developed through crunching numbers on underwriting satellite insurance and the like.
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