Market report: Retail investors light up Aga shares

What's cooking at Aga Rangemaster? Its shares were warmed up nearly 5 per cent during afternoon trade yesterday as retail investors started to snap up the stock. The cooker maker's shares had a terrible summer after it slashed its dividend to bolster its pension fund.

In the past two months shareholder Henderson Global Investors has sold most of its holding and the shares slipped to a five month low of 54.25p last month.

But yesterday the shares hit 58.5p with volume rocketing to more than 2 million, before edging back down and it ended up 1.5p at 57.12p. Traders think the shares sold by Henderson have now been absorbed, causing the mini spike in price.

The group has been trying to combat falling sales by going in to new markets such as China and analysts at Singer recently began covering the range maker and gave it a target price of 84p.

There was good news for drivers but bad news for shareholders at Admiral. Premium costs are coming down, but so is the turnover at the insurer.

For the third quarter to October, turnover fell by 2 per cent to £570m and its shares drove down more than 5 per cent, losing 61p to 1,081p.

The Association of British Insurers estimates that the growing number of personal injury claims has meant the UK motor insurance market hasn't made an underwriting profit for around 16 years. Insurers have been making money on ancillary income instead. Referral fees account for about 6 per cent of Admiral's UK car insurance profits. But the incoming ban on these fees next year is more bad news car insurers profits.

Investec downgraded the stock to sell with a share price target of 570p and said "paying 12x earnings for what is essentially a UK motor insurer is too much."

Direct Line also reported weak quarterly results yesterday and its shares travelled down 3.75p to 195.25p.

The FTSE 100 index hung on to yesterday's gains and moved up when healthy US non-farm payrolls data came in. But a sell-off stared during afternoon trade and the benchmark index ended up 6.63 points at 5868.55.

Fund managers are starting to think about what the Retail Distribution Review will mean next year. A report released by Fundscape this week warned fund managers will face increased competition from exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and investment trusts as investment advisers are more likely to consider these products now that they aren't just driven by commission. Fundscape reckons growth in funds under management will be very low or non-existent next year as the change takes place.

Concerns on how the review will hit wealth managers has already hurt Hargreaves Lansdown share price this week. Scribes at Citi issued a detail note on their view of what the changes mean and Hargreaves Lansdowne shares lost more than 4 per cent on Monday. They have since recovered and were up 15.5p to 762p yesterday. But the impact of RDR is still a concern and Robert Bailey, head of sales at Axa Investment Managers, thinks the FSAs plan to get greater transparency on the costs of the financial advice "will impact consumers, advisers and fund managers alike."

On the mid cap index some City traders were speculating a bid could still come in from Carlyle for defence equipment maker Chemring, despite many suspecting it will never materialise. The chat that a reduced bid of 350p a share could be put on the table. Its shares hurried up 16.7p to 277.3p.

The market was full of chatter on Nat Rothschild and Indonesian coal miner Bumi. Rothschild is assembling a counterbid to the $1.4bn offer made last month by the Bakrie family. Bumi issued a statement to say it had not received a proposal but Bumi jumped to the top of the mid cap index, up 34.7p to 283p.

Meanwhile, on AIM, the miner Aureus. is raising £50m in a secondary placing to finance the building of Liberia's first commercial gold mine.

Aureus, run by former Randgold Resources director and European Goldfields chief executive David Reading, is raising the money in the UK and North America through existing and new shareholders. Aureus already has a 25 year mining permit for the mine, New Liberty, and the financing enables it to be built. Its shares dug down 6p to 51.5p.

The sun rises over St Andrews golf course, but will it be a new dawn for the Royal and Ancient Golf Club?
sportAnd it's Yes to women (at the R&A)
Arts and Entertainment
Friends is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year
tvSeries celebrates 20th anniversary
Yaya Touré (left) and Bayern Munich’s Spanish defender Juan Bernat
footballToure's lack of defensive work is big problem for City
voicesApple continually kill off smaller app developers, and that's no good for anyone
Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

Wembley Stadium
footballNews follows deal with Germany
Arts and Entertainment
A spell in the sun: Emma Stone and Colin Firth star in ‘Magic in the Moonlight’
filmReview: Magic In The Moonlight
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo

Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style

ScienceGallery: Otherwise known as 'the best damn photos of space you'll see till 2015'
Life and Style

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SQL Developer - Watford/NW London - £320 - £330 p/d - 6 months

£320 - £330 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...

Head of Audit

To £75,000 + Pension + Benefits + Bonus: Saxton Leigh: My client is looking f...

Audit Manager Central Functions

To £85,000 + banking benefits: Saxton Leigh: You will be expected to carry out...

Credit Risk Audit Manager

Up to £90,000 + benefits: Saxton Leigh: Credit Risk Audit Manager required to ...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week