Boohoo ahead as bosses fill their boots
UNDER-FIRE online retailer Boohoo revealed yesterday that some of its bosses had increased their stake in the Aim-listed company.
Mahmud Kamani, chairman of Boohoo, snapped up 5m ordinary shares at an average price of 214.28p each, totalling £10.7m, while co-founder Carol Kane bought 2m for £4.28m.
The fast-fashion retailer has seen its share price plummet over the last week after allegations that factories in its supply chain paid illegally low wages, as little as £3.50 per hour, and forced people to work during the pandemic without protection.
The company has since launched an independent review of its supply chain. Shares closed 25p higher at 235p, a rise of 12pc.
It came as a sell-off of Chinese shares intensified into the worst fall since February as state media continued to criticise a recent market rally. The benchmark CSI 300 index closed down 4.8pc, its biggest loss since markets buckled after reopening in February following the lunar new year break.
Spirits manufacturer Kweichow Moutai dropped as much as 8.7pc, wiping more than $25bn (£20bn) off its value, after criticism from the state-owned People’s Daily, which said “alcohol is meant for drinking, not for speculation or corruption”.
European equities followed Asia’s lead in ending lower, but limited their downside to about half a percentage point thanks to upbeat US data pointing to stronger-than-forecast retail sales figures.
London’s benchmark FTSE 100 closed 0.67pc lower at 6,250.69, while the FTSE 250 shed 0.57pc, ending at 17,321.29.
Stocks that have been particularly vulnerable to the global health crisis were among the top fallers, with manufacturing group Melrose slipping 4.75p to 117.75p and foodservice company Compass falling 34p to £11.50.
Anglo American also dipped 22.8p to £19.30 after cutting its full-year guidance for coal output. The FTSE 100 miner said overall production fell 18pc in the second quarter due to the lockdown and incidents at some of its mines. It cut its forecast for coal production from between 19m to 21m tons to between 16m to 18m tons.
Royal Bank of Canada’s Tyler Broda said Anglo American’s results should be taken “relatively positively” given low expectations.
Elsewhere, SSE was one of the best large-cap performers even after admitting that it expects profit to take a hit of £150m-£250m. Despite the disruption from the health crisis, the company said it will stick to its five-year dividend plan to 2022-23, and in November intends to pay an interim dividend of 24.4p.
It also confirmed it is pressing ahead with its £7.5bn capital expenditure plan for low-carbon projects in the next five years.
SSE shares rose 33.5p, or 2.5pc, to £13.97.
Meanwhile, GVC Holdings dropped 3.7pc after it announced that it expects adjusted first-half earnings to be between £340m and £350m, a decline from the £366.6m posted last year. It ended the day 33.6p lower at 879.8p.