DIY shop retailer Kingfisher was a high riser following an analyst visit to its Screwfix operations on Friday. Espirito Santo, Jefferies and Panmure Gordon reiterated their 'buy' ratings on the stock today, while speculation that the company is thinking of launching its Screwfix chain in France was lifting shares.
"Kingfisher's Investor Day provided interesting insights into the growth outlook at B&Q and Screwfix. The former is relatively mature and will benefit from group scale in common ranging and direct sourcing, while the latter still has significant organic growth opportunity and is leading the group's multichannel strategy," said analyst Philip Dorgan from Panmure Gordon.
"While there are some headwinds to overcome, we believe that Kingfisher's long term growth prospects mean that the current valuation of 11.8x trough earnings is a good entry point."
Financial services provider Hargreaves Lansdown continued to make gains following Friday's interim results, in which it reported record levels of revenue, assets under administration and client numbers in the second quarter.
UK lenders HSBC, Barclays and Lloyds were in demand this afternoon but part-nationalised lender Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was bucking the trend. RBS fell after confirming that Spanish banking giant Santander is going back on its agreement to purchase 316 RBS branches in the UK.
Shares of Standard Chartered are higher after analysts at Citi named it as one of their most preferred stocks. That after the lender underperformed its peers in the European bank sector during the third quarter and by 15% year-to-date.
Mining peers Kazakhmys, Evraz, Anglo American and Rio Tinto were firmly lower after Goldman Sachs downgraded its ratings on all four stocks.
Meanwhile, Babcock, the engineering support services firm, was on the up after Bank of America Merrill Lynch hiked its target price for the shares
by over 20% from 870p to 1,050p. However, the broker maintained its 'neutral' rating.
Telecoms group BT was also a heavy faller after Barclays Capital lowered its rating to 'equal weight' and cut its target price for the shares from 260p to 230p.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Kingfisher (KGF) 274.80p +2.35%
Admiral Group (ADM) 1,112.00p +2.30%
Standard Chartered (STAN) 1,460.00p +2.28%
British Land Co (BLND) 532.00p +1.92%
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 725.00p +1.83%
ITV (ITV) 91.10p +1.73%
Barclays (BARC) 235.85p +1.57%
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 40.27p +1.42%
Land Securities Group (LAND) 795.50p +1.40%
Whitbread (WTB) 2,382.00p +1.40%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Kazakhmys (KAZ) 696.00p -2.73%
Evraz (EVR) 228.10p -2.65%
Anglo American (AAL) 1,781.50p -2.36%
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) 265.30p -2.07%
Eurasian Natural Resources Corp. (ENRC) 323.70p -1.58%
Rio Tinto (RIO) 2,988.50p -1.11%
BT Group (BT.A) 216.90p -0.82%
International Consolidated Airlines Group SA (CDI) (IAG) 159.00p -0.75%
Vodafone Group (VOD) 173.50p -0.74%
Vedanta Resources (VED) 1,078.00p -0.65%