Market Report: Genie back in bottle at Coca-Cola HBC

City experts yesterday took the fizz out of a Greek bottling company on fears of a slowdown in the drinks market. The blue-chip bottler Coca-Cola HBC – once known as Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company – ran out of juice when analysts at the investment bank Nomura issued a warning about its growth prospects and hefty share price. The group, which bottles fizzy and still drinks for Coca-Cola and other brands, as well as bottling and distributing beer in parts of Europe, is a recent entrant to the blue-chip index. Its shares peaked in mid-September at 1,979p when a range of investors piled in, but Nomura thinks the "positive technical impact of inclusion in FTSE indices [is] likely to have run its course" for now.

Nomura also highlighted concerns over the "slower growth outlook for global beer" and a "slower volume growth trajectory" compared with its peak years of 2004-08.

Nomura's experts said Coca-Cola HBC looks expensive on a price/earnings ratio of 23.9 times earnings but does at least offer the long-term advantages of "strong market shares in key territories". In the short term Nomura rated it "reduce", down from neutral, and gave it a 1,500p price target for shares that fell 25p to 1,798p.

It looked better for the mid-cap drinks maker and Irn-Bru owner AG Barr. Analysts at the investment bank Canaccord Genuity expect it to have performed well as the favourable weather during the summer and autumn will have helped sales. The group has been improving costs and efficiencies and Canaccord noted that it "should also start to see cost savings from reduced distribution miles, lower inventory levels and enhanced organic growth" with the start of production at its Milton Keynes distribution unit. AG Barr rose 26p to 528p.

The wider market was buoyed by upbeat traders who assumed the US Federal Reserve will not begin reducing monetary stimulus for some time. The FTSE 100 climbed 48.91 points to 6774.73 points.

Traders noted that data from the International Monetary Fund – showing Russia reduced gold reserves in September for the first time in a year – could hurt the gold price. Precious metal miners were subsequently weaker, with Randgold Resources down 89p to 4,762p and Mexico's Fresnillo tarnished 23p at 1,019p. The financial sector was also fragile and Lloyds Banking Group, after reporting a strong profit rise accompanied by a £750m PPI mis-selling charge, lost 1.61p to 78.01p.

Also loitering at the bottom of the benchmark index was explorer Tullow Oil after it plugged and abandoned another well. Punters were unhappy with the development, at the Wisting well off the coast of Norway, especially as it followed the update from Tullow on Monday that operations in Kenya's Turkana region had closed because of striking workers. Tullow is confident it can sort things out there, but after a 2.2 per cent tumble on Monday, the shares dipped another 2.19 per cent to 936p.

Oil giant BP had better news for investors in the shape of a 5.6 per cent dividend rise and it was top of the table, up 25.4p to 477.5p.

Marks & Spencer was 10.6p smarter at 485.6p on reports that its clothing sales have improved.

Housebuilders were popular after mortgage approvals data for September showed continued increases, and Persimmon built up a 31p gain to 1,255p.

Back on the mid-tier table, there have been on-and-off rumours about potential takeover activity at the hedge fund Man Group. Yesterday vague rumours returned that an American bank is taking a look again and Man added 2p to 91p.

Online grocer Ocado was also in favour and gained 24.6p to 430.5p.

The serviced-office group Regus suffered in the morning session as investors balked at its expensive expansion plans when it gave an update on its full-year results. But after taking in all the good news, traders pushed the shares up 1p to 205.8p.

The engineering and technology specialist China New Energy is in talks with Sunbird Bioenergy to develop a bio-refinery in Nigeria. The market cap of the group doubled as the shares jumped 3.05p to 3.675p.

China's Green Dragon Gas has agreed a deal with a subsidiary of China National Offshore Oil Corporation and it hissed up 22p to 270p.

News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete today
News
people'I’d rather have Fred and Rose West quote my characters on childcare'
Life and Style
The new Windows 10 Start Menu
tech
Arts and Entertainment
There has been a boom in ticket sales for female comics, according to an industry survey
comedyFirst national survey reveals Britain’s comedic tastes
PROMOTED VIDEO
Travel
Bruce Chatwin's novel 'On the Black Hill' was set at The Vision Farm
travelOne of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
Sport
footballManchester City 1 Roma 1: Result leaves Premier League champions in danger of not progressing
Arts and Entertainment
Gay and OK: a scene from 'Pride'
filmsUS film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
News
i100
Life and Style
Magic roundabouts: the gyratory system that has excited enthusiasts in Swindon
motoringJust who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Arts and Entertainment
Hilary North's 'How My Life Has Changed', 2001
booksWell it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Birmingham - Real Staffing

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Real Staffing are currently lo...

Trust Accountant - Kent

NEGOTIABLE: Austen Lloyd: TRUST ACCOUNTANT - KENTIf you are a Chartered Accou...

Graduate Recruitment Consultant - 2013/14 Grads - No Exp Needed

£18000 - £20000 per annum + OTE £30000: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 b...

Law Costs

Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: CITY - Law Costs Draftsperson - NICHE...

Day In a Page

Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?