Cycling and auto accessories retailer Halfords sped into the top spot after full-year profits accelerated past consensus forecasts thanks to a stonking fourth quarter from cycling as the group's investment programme began to deliver results.
A 9.9% fourth quarter increase in retail sales and 4.3% from Autocentres helped lift annual revenues 7.9% higher to £939.7m, enabling a 1.1% rise in profit before tax to £72.8m versus the £70m consensus.
Imagination Technologies impressed after agreeing two deals to strengthen its MIPS architecture into a more serious competitor for ARM. The company announced a collaboration with US technology giant Oracle to enhance Java computer programming language for embedded applications and the Internet of Things, and has also jointly created a new open-source foundation called 'prpl' to support MIPS.
Meanwhile, leading the downside was Dairy Crest, with investors engaging in a round of profit-taking after it delivered a sizeable increase in full-year profit as it reorganises into one business structure. Adjusted pre-tax profit rose to £65.3m for year ended March 31st from £49.7m the previous year after cost savings and profits from disposals. Revenue rose to £1.391bn from £1.382bn.
Polymetal International failed to impress investors with the news it has entered into an agreement to acquire Altynalmas Gold for an initial consideration of $318.5m in cash. The group would also issue current owners Sumeru Gold and Sumeru LLP shares
Electronics and maintenance products distributor Electrocomponents disappointed with its revenue growth of just 2% in the first week of the financial year, with shares falling even further after UBS cut its price target from 320p to 315p.
Booker Group was also firmly in the red, despite its annual pre-tax profit jumping 38% to £105.2m as the UK food wholesaler achieved an increase in sales. Total sales climbed 17.3% to £4.7bn in the year ended March 28th 2014 as non-tobacco sales rose 4.4% to offset a 1.7% decline in tobacco sales.
FTSE 250 - Risers
Halfords Group (HFD) 488.60p +10.69%
Imagination Technologies Group (IMG) 227.50p +8.70%
Oxford Instruments (OXIG) 1,261.00p +4.39%
BTG (BTG) 543.00p +4.22%
CSR (CSR) 570.00p +4.11%
Playtech (PTEC) 628.50p +3.54%
Countrywide (CWD) 549.50p +3.48%
Bovis Homes Group (BVS) 786.00p +3.42%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 330.20p +3.19%
Ladbrokes (LAD) 142.80p +3.10%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Dairy Crest Group (DCG) 431.60p -6.17%
Polymetal International (POLY) 511.00p -5.89%
Electrocomponents (ECM) 275.30p -4.74%
Booker Group (BOK) 136.90p -3.86%
Mitchells & Butlers (MAB) 411.00p -3.72%
Supergroup (SGP) 980.00p -3.16%
Telecom Plus (TEP) 1,485.00p -2.24%
COLT Group SA (COLT) 136.90p -2.07%
RPS Group (RPS) 289.70p -1.90%
Rentokil Initial (RTO) 118.30p -1.83%