Western Mail - - BUSINESS -

STER­LING has leapt to its high­est level since the EU ref­er­en­dum re­sult af­ter a Bank of Eng­land pol­i­cy­maker hinted that he may back an in­ter­est rate rise.

The pound con­tin­ued its re­mark­able rally from Thurs­day’s ses­sion, push­ing 1.4% higher to 1.358 ver­sus the US dol­lar to clock lev­els not seen since June 24 last year.

Ster­ling also climbed 0.9% against the euro to 1.135.

How­ever, the strength of the UK cur­rency heaped more mis­ery on blue-chip stocks, with the FTSE 100 In­dex drop­ping to its low­est level since April, be­fore clos­ing down 79.92 points to 7,215.47.

Multi­na­tional blue-chip stocks suf­fer when the pound rises be­cause their over­seas earn­ings are hit by a less favourable cur­rency trans­la­tion.

Gert­jan Vlieghe, an ex­ter­nal vot­ing mem­ber of the Bank’s Mone­tary Pol­icy Com­mit­tee, said he has been “struck” by a se­ries of de­vel­op­ments in the UK econ­omy – in­clud­ing high in­fla­tion – and pointed to the wider eco­nomic back­drop of “im­prov­ing global growth” over the past year.

Euro­pean mar­kets also drifted lower on Fri­day, with Ger­many’s Xe­tra Dax and the Cac 40 in France both slip­ping by 0.2%.

How­ever, the price of oil was 0.2% higher at 55.57 a bar­rel fol­low­ing fore­casts of in­creased de­mand and re­ports US re­finer­ies kick­ing back into gear.

In UK stocks, pub group JD Wether­spoon was the big­gest riser on the sec­ond tier thanks to ris­ing full-year sales and profit, while the pub chain’s Brexit-back­ing chair­man took aim at EU “oli­garchs” in yet an­other rant.

Rev­enue rose 4.1% to £1.66bn in the year to July 30 as the group booked prof­its of £102.8m, an in­crease of 27.6%.

Like-for-like sales rose 4% in the pe­riod, with Wether­spoon say­ing that com­pa­ra­ble sales have in­creased by 6.1% since Au­gust.

Shares soared more than 13%, or 145p to 1,189p.

The big­gest ris­ers on the FTSE 100 In­dex were Im­pe­rial Brands up 67p to 3,327.5p, ITV up 2.2p to 158.2p, Bri­tish Amer­i­can To­bacco up 48.5p to 4,741p, and Next up 51p to 5,045p.

The big­gest fall­ers were Car­ni­val down 317p to 4,783p, Prov­i­dent Fi­nan­cial down 35.5p to 794p, Ferguson down 152p to 4,486p, and Pear­son down 18p to 568.5p.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.