Friday Email: 06 November 2015
Every Friday morning our lead analyst Mark Riding sends out his weekly run-down and upcoming events in the investor calendar, like this one:
The FTSE 100 is still stuck in a narrow trading range and is still lacking real direction since the October rally. It is currently trading at the level at which it started the week.
There were no spectacular dividend increases in the past week although Imperial Tobacco delivered its customary 10% increase. Marks and Spencer surprised the market with a 6.3% increase in its dividend and highly rated Associated British Foods delivered a 3% increase.
Things pick up in the week ahead with a lot of companies reporting interim results with heavyweights Vodafone, National Grid, Experian, British Land and SSE reporting to the market.
The miners have come under heavy selling pressure again after staging a strong rally in October. It is so difficult to predict an upturn for commodities and there have been countless false rallies. I continue to like the big beneficiaries such as the airlines which took a dip on the Russian airline disaster, but have now rallied. Ashtead made it into the Interactive Investor winter portfolios and I certainly agree with that. It's track record is very good and if its Q1 results are anything to go by, we can expect another excellent year of profits and dividend growth.
OPG produced a very good trading update yesterday and barring a disaster at one of the power stations should produce stellar results this year and next. A maiden dividend should come soon too.
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Read next: 30 October 2015
The FTSE 100 is trading flat to slightly down on the week at just above the 6400 level at market open. The market suddenly does not feel so bullish and there has been a fresh bout of heavy selling of commodities stocks, just when they seemed to be turning up. US GDP rose less than expected yesterday, but the Fed was still hinting at a December rate rise, resulting in a falling maket that did manage to recover a lot of the lost gound by the close of play yesterday. So, overall, the market has done well to hold onto recent gains, although it has felt a bit more volatile this week.