Market Report: Improving news digs miners out of trouble

Miners managed to dig themselves out yesterday after weeks of being in the red as the US bellwether Alcoa reported better than expected results. The aluminium producer is the first to report earnings in the US each quarter, and beat expectations this time around. This, combined with better economic news across the board, a rise in metal prices and news of falling Chinese production costs sent metal miners soaring.

The iron ore miner Vedanta Resources was top of the leaderboard – up 86p, or 8.5 per cent, to 1,094p. Fellow iron ore specialist Ferrexpo, on the mid-tier index, reported a 21 per cent rise in output during the second quarter. Deutsche Bank's analysts were so keen they rated it a buy with a target price of 360p for shares that were 16.9p ahead at 155.6p.

The mining giant Anglo American was in focus after analysts at Macquarie Bank ran the numbers on a potential break-up of the group. Macquarie thinks that if Anglo sold off its 80 per cent stake in Anglo American Platinum and its De Beers diamond business and brought in a partner at its troubled Minas-Rio mining project it would add more value for its long-suffering shareholders.

Macquarie's experts think new chief executive Mark Cutifani "has his work cut out for him to 'pay back' Anglo shareholders for the last five to six years of value destruction".

Separately, its De Beers subsidiary – the world's largest diamond producer – averted strike action in South Africa this week when it agreed to increase pay by 9 per cent. Anglo added 37p to 1,281p.

The FTSE 100 continued the previous day's gains. It soared another 63.01 points to 6,513.08, back up to levels seen in early June. Tobi Morris, a senior sales trader at the spread-betting group CMC Markets, said: "Weaker than expected industrial production numbers out of the UK yesterday failed to take the shine off stocks, with the FTSE securing further gains."

A consistent riser was Royal Bank of Scotland after a strong performance on Monday, when it finished the day up 4.3 per cent. Yesterday it added another 15.6p to 304.4p as news that a "good" and "bad" bank split is looking less likely helped it to continue the run. Goldman Sachs ran the numbers factoring in if it did have to split and raised its rating to "buy" from "neutral" with a 370p price target. It argued that if the Government did proceed with a split of the tax-payer-owned bank it would at the very least cure the problems of "muted core returns and elevated uncertainty".

The high-street bellwether Marks & Spencer reported yet another fall in clothing sales and lost 6.5p to 453.2p. On the mid-cap index, a positive update from the engineering data and design IT systems specialist Aveva helped it to charge ahead 310p to 2,578p.

The gold producer Centamin produced another record quarter, with 93,624 ounces of gold produced, but it slipped 1.6p to 36.76p.

A new home needs a new floor, so the City was betting that a tiles and flooring specialist will benefit from the latest housing boom. The retailer Topps Tiles was chosen as a top pick by Goldman Sachs's analysts because, they said, an "increase in housing turnover" will mean people will spend more on tarting up their homes. They said the 320-strong chain has strengthened its position in the "floor covering niche", and added that the risk from "online disruption" is low because people still want to buy floor coverings and tiles from shops, not over the internet. The small-cap retailer laid down a 5.25p gain to 77.5p.

The Aim-listed crowd-sourcing specialist blur Group reported its most successful quarter, with a 125 per cent increase in the number of new projects and a 315 per cent increase in the total value of the projects added at $9.41m (£6.33m). It produced a 40p rise to 242.5p.

In London's biggest technology float this year Keyword Studios, a technical services provider to the video games industry, plans to raise £28m on Aim.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
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

Guru Careers: Stockbroker

£Basic (OTE) + Uncapped Commission: Guru Careers: A Stockbroker (qualified / p...

Recruitment Genius: Financial Adviser

£20000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you recently QCA Level 4 qu...

SThree: Graduate Recruitment Resourcer

£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...

Guru Careers: Application Support Analyst / 1st Line Support

£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: We are seeking an Application Support Analyst / 1st L...

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence