London pre-open: Stocks seen higher ahead of construction PMI

Tue 04 Feb 2020

LONDON (SHARECAST) - (Sharecast News) - London stocks were set to rise again at the open on Tuesday following positive US and Asian sessions, as investors eyed the latest reading on the UK construction sector.
The FTSE 100 was called to open 46 points higher at 7,372.

CMC Markets analyst David Madden said: "Overnight stocks in mainland China rebounded a little as the dust settled from the panic selling witnessed yesterday. Traders are clearly still fearful as the gains achieved pale in comparison to losses incurred on Monday."

On the UK data front, Markit's construction purchasing managers' index for January is due at 0930 GMT, with analysts expecting a reading of 46.6, up from 44.4 in December.

Investors will also be mulling results from Google parent Alphabet overnight as its shares slumped in after-hours trading following weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter numbers. Revenue rose 17% to $46.08bn, marking the slowest Q4 growth in four years and missing expectations of $46.94bn.

In UK corporate news, oil giant BP said underlying replacement cost profit for the fourth quarter and full year was $2.6bn and $10bn respectively, compared to $3.5bn and $12.7bn for the same periods a year earlier, reflecting the impact of a weaker environment.

Reported profit was $19m for the fourth quarter, down from $766m in 2018 and $4bn for the full year compared with $9.3bn a year earlier, the company said.

Glencore reported a 6% fall in copper production for 2019 after the miner and commodities trader shut down its mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Total own-sourced copper production fell by 82,500 tonnes to 1,371,200 tonnes in the year to the end of December. About half the decline was at the company's African copper operations, where production fell 10% to 369.9 kilotonnes.

Electrocomponents announced that Lindsley Ruth was set to resume his role as chief executive officer from 10 February.

The FTSE 250 company's board had announced on 11 November that Ruth was taking a temporary leave of absence to receive treatment for a medical condition.

"We are delighted that Lindsley is now fit and able to return to his role as chief executive officer," said chairman Peter Johnson.
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