Market Report: Liberty leads charge on property values

Liberty International led the real-estate sector higher last night, advancing to pole position on the benchmark index after a new survey sparked hopes of a recovery in commercial property values. Data from the Investment Property Databank (IPD) revealed that commercial property values had climbed by 1.9 per cent in October, compared with a 1.1 per cent rise in September. The index showed gains in all three sub-sectors, with retail property rising by 2.6 per cent, industrial property climbing by 1.5 per cent and office values growing by 1.1 per cent. Traders soon piled in, driving Liberty to 504p, up almost 4 per cent or 19p. British Land, at the number two spot on the FTSE 100, rose to 498.2p, up 2.8 per cent or 13.5p, and Hammerson gained 2.3 per cent or 10.1p to 445p. Land Securities was also strong, closing 16p higher at 726.5p.

Overall, the FTSE 100 was broadly unchanged, with a weak start on Wall Street hampering progress in London. At the close, the benchmark was 19.88 points ahead at 5296.38p, while the FTSE 250 was 77.82 points stronger at 9373.74. Traders booked profits following the release of the Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index, which fell to 66 points in November, down from 70.6 points in October. Analysts had pencilled in a rise to 72.

The hospitality group InterContinental Hotels gained ground on the back of a new Credit Suisse poll of large listed European companies, which showed that 66 per cent expect to "either maintain or increase spending" over the next 12 months. "IT and travel spending are the areas that are expected to improve the most compared to the previous six months," the broker said, aiding InterContinental, which climbed to 857p, up 19p, as traders saw scope for an uptick in the demand for hotel rooms.

British Airways stood firm, rising by 2p to 217p, after confirming plans to merge with Spain's Iberia. Panmure Gordon, which raised its target price for the stock to 225p from 160p in response, said that overall, "the deal makes sense". "There is greater potential for future growth by optimising the dual hubs of London and Madrid," the broker said, maintaining a "hold" stance on the stock. "The combined network is a stronger one and there are attractive synergies."

On the downside, parts of the mining sector remained unsettled, as the profit-taking trend persisted. The Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation, the target price for which was scaled back to 965p from 1010p at Nomura, was among the weakest, easing by 2.6 per cent or 23.5p to 883p. Kazakhmys, which was downgraded to "reduce" from "buy" by the same broker, lost 12p to 1258p.

"We expect both ENRC and Kazakhmys to suffer from the potential appreciation of [the] Kazakh Tenge and [the] absence of reduction in Kazakh tax rates," Nomura said. The broker retained its "buy" stance on ENRC, however, saying that its "long-term chrome price forecasts were probably conservative".In the wider sector, Vedanta Resources fell to 2330p, down 59p, while Lonmin retreated by 22p to 1592p. The copper miner Antofagasta eased to 868p, down 12p.

The banking sector was mixed, with Barclays declining to 320p, down 4.1p, and Lloyds Banking Group easing by 0.15p to 89.85p. The Royal Bank of Scotland managed to rise, gaining 0.23p to 37.44p, as traders bought in on recent weakness. HSBC was the strongest, advancing to 741.6p, up 9.1p, while Standard Chartered fell back to 1665p, down 18.5p.

Elsewhere, Marston's, the pubs group, gained 2.15p to 86p, thanks to some words of support from UBS, which said the shares were now fairly valued. "A fairly priced valuation on most metrics causes us to upgrade the shares to Neutral, while uncertain prospects and the lack of an immediate catalyst mean [they] are not yet a 'buy'," the broker said, abandoning its "sell" stance on the stock.

Further afield, Goldman Sachs supported sentiment around IMI, which gained 7p to 526p after the broker issued a new capital goods sector review, reiterating its "buy" stance and raising its target price for the stock to 640p from 580p. The broker also repeated its positive stance on Cookson, which was 3.9p firmer at 432p at the end of play. Weir, which is rated "neutral" by Goldman analysts, was 2p ahead at 744.5p, after the broker revised its target price for the stock to 820p from 722p.

ITV edged up by 0.6p to 51.3p after Credit Suisse weighed in, raising its estimates and upping its target price for the stock to 50p from 40p to reflect the update last week. "We see upside given the momentum behind operationally leveraged cyclicals such as ITV; regulatory upside; and the eventual resumption of takeover speculation," the broker said, adding that it nevertheless remained "neutral" stock owing in part to its concerns that the bounce in TV advertising as a recovery takes root may disappoint.

Further afield, housing sector stocks rose with their large-cap commercial property peers, with Barratt Developments gaining 1.7p to 140.2p and Bellway rising by 19p to 780p. Bovis Homes was also strong, gaining 9.8p to 440.8p, while Taylor Wimpey advanced to 42.51p, up 2.01p or almost 5 per cent.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
News
Buddy DeFranco
people
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
filmIdris Elba responds to James Bond rumours on Twitter
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones
film
News
i100
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
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

Selby Jennings: VP/SVP Credit Quant- NY- Investment Bank

Not specified: Selby Jennings: VP/SVP Credit Quant Top tier investment bank i...

Selby Jennings: Quantitative Research | Equity | New York

Not specified: Selby Jennings: Quantitative Research | Global Equity | New Yor...

Selby Jennings: SVP Model Validation

Not specified: Selby Jennings: SVP Model Validation This top tiered investment...

Selby Jennings: Oil Operations

Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...

Day In a Page

Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month