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FTSE 100 watch: Footsie flat at start of Easter week

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The FTSE 100 has been little changed this Monday, despite positive leads from the US and Asia, weighed down by a rise in the pound. Compass Group (LON:CPG) meanwhile is underperforming the broader London market, following downbeat analyst comments.

Index little changed

As of 12:34 BST, the Footsie had given up 5.82 points to stand 0.08 percent lower at 7,431.24. Sentiment has been subdued at the start of the shortened Easter week, despite upbeat data and positive leads from the US and Asia. Reuters noted that exporter stocks have fallen, as the pound rose following comments from Britain’s foreign minister Jeremy Hunt on talks between the government and the opposition Labour Party to find a consensus over Brexit.

Reuters further quoted London Capital Group analyst Jasper Lawler as commenting that traders will be keeping a close eye on whether the strong start to the US earnings season “is able to continue beyond the banking sector […] right now this is looking unlikely”.

FTSE 100 movers

In individual blue-chip movers, shares in Compass group have been sold off as Barclays trimmed its rating on the company from ‘overweight’ to ‘equal weight’. Proactive Investors quoted the analysts as commenting that the FTSE 100 group’s valuation had now reached levels that made “upside feel more limited” and that they were now more cautious in the medium-term. Compass’ share price is currently 2.15 percent worse off at 1,754.37p.

Shares in Whitbread (LON:WTB) are outperforming the market amid reports that the Premier Inn owner is expected to cut more than 100 head-office jobs, following the sale of Costa Coffee  to The Coca-Cola Company for £3.9 billion. The group’s shares are changing hands 0.69 percent higher at 4,872.60p.

The FTSE 100 index was 0.08 percent lower at 7,430.85 points as of 12:50 BST on Monday, 15 April 2019.

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