Financial services company Hargreaves Lansdown plunged into the bottom spot today after it said that new rules under the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) would trim revenues by around 9m pounds and would reduce client charges by 8m pounds in the first 12 months and said it will need to gather approximately 3.5bn pounds of new assets over the next three years to offset the impact of these declines.
In parallel, Fidelity Worldwide's Head of Personal Investing, Mark Till, told Bloomberg in an interview that on March 1st they will introduce a new fee structure for retail clients so as to undercut competitors, including Hargreaves Lansdown.
Both Centrica and SSE were also lower after Barclays downgraded both stocks to 'underweight'. In a research note, utilities analysts at the bank said a retail margin squeeze appeared to be inevitable, as declining consumption and other forecast cost pressures cannot be met with further price increases from the 'Big Six' utilities as the government would not sanction it.
Imperial Tobacco Group fell after going ex-dividend.
Meanwhile, high-end fashion brand Burberry surged today after reporting a better-than-expected 14% rise in retail sales in the third quarter, helped by double-digit growth in its key Asia-Pacific region.
Diversified mining giant Anglo American was also a high riser after analysts at UBS upgraded the stock from 'neutral' to 'buy', saying that the risk-reward balance is more "compelling" after recent weakness. The bank said: "Anglo has underperformed the other diversified miners by 18% over the last three months, and, in our opinion, the valuation now looks attractive."
Meanwhile, Standard Life was higher after Credit Suisse lifted the shares
to 'outperform', highlighting its preference for life insurers over property and casualty firms. As such, the bank also maintained its positive stance towards Prudential and Aviva, giving both stocks a lift.
GKN rose on reports it is set to open a new plant in Russia covering 5,000 square metres. Production is expected to begin early next year, according to Reuters.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Burberry Group (BRBY) 1,554.00p +5.79%
Anglo American (AAL) 1,330.50p +5.39%
G4S (GFS) 258.20p +3.24%
GKN (GKN) 400.70p +2.43%
Rexam (REX) 511.00p +2.10%
Prudential (PRU) 1,378.00p +2.07%
Standard Life (SL.) 384.90p +2.07%
Royal Mail (RMG) 609.00p +2.01%
Weir Group (WEIR) 2,139.00p +2.00%
Schroders (SDR) 2,597.00p +1.96%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 1,433.00p -4.97%
Centrica (CNA) 316.70p -3.15%
Imperial Tobacco Group (IMT) 2,185.00p -3.02%
Fresnillo (FRES) 689.00p -2.96%
Randgold Resources Ltd. (RRS) 3,729.00p -2.94%
SSE (SSE) 1,316.00p -2.45%
Resolution Ltd. (RSL) 352.40p -2.00%
Coca-Cola HBC AG (CDI) (CCH) 1,748.00p -1.63%
Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW) 246.20p -1.44%
easyJet (EZJ) 1,674.00p -1.24%