City sources predict the FTSE 100 will open down 14 points from yesterday's close of 5,917, tracking US stocks lower, which ended Thursday's session firmly in the red following Google's surprise results, which came in well below expectations.
Search engine giant Google sent tech stocks into reverse after it filed its latest quarterly numbers with the SEC early by mistake - they had not been expected until after the close of Thursday's trading.
Google was forced to temporarily suspend trading after stocks lost around 10% of their value.
Also overnight, Eurozone leaders reached an agreement on the setting up of a single supervisor for banks. However, it remains unclear when the new European rescue-fund -the European Stability Mechanism (ESM)- will be allowed to re-capitalise banks directly.
To be had in account, there is some negative market chatter out this morning as regards the prospects for Greece going into 2013.
Economic data on today's agenda include the EU Balance of Payments, Balance of Trade and Current Account data, as well as US Existing Home Sales.
In the UK, a reading of Public Sector Finances will be issued at 09:30. In this regard, economists at Lloyds have written that: "public finances have had a poor start to 2012-13 and, after allowing for the effects of the one-off capital transfer in April, PSNBX is some £13bn worse over the first five months of the year than last year." In their opinion that deterioration looks set to continue in September. Their forecast is for a deficit, ex financial transactions, of £14.2bn - £0.8bn worse than last year.
In company news, temporary power and temperature control group Aggreko got an Olympics revenue boost in the third quarter, but guidance for the full year was mixed, with some parts of the business performing better and worse than expectations and currency movements likely to have a negative impact on the bottom line. Trading since July 1st to date has been strong, the firm said, with reported revenues in the third quarter up 22%. On an underlying basis, which exclude revenue rom major one-off events (such as the Asian Games in 2011 and the London Olympics in 2012), sales grew by 13%.
Distribution and outsourcing group Bunzl said the third quarter saw a moderation in the underlying revenue growth rate, particularly in North America, where the company is going up against tough comparatives. In the third quarter the underlying growth rate, which strips out the effects of acquisitions, eased to 2%, with exchange rate
fluctuations not helping, shaving between two and three percentage points off the rate.
Oil company Premier Oil is inviting holders of its guaranteed convertible bonds due 2014 to trade them in for similar bonds due in 2018. The new bonds will have a conversion price of $7.00 and a coupon (interest rate) of 2.5%. This compares with the existing convertible bonds, which have a conversion price of $6.69 and a coupon of 2.875%. The exchange will only go ahead if Premier gets enough takers in respect of $100m of the existing bonds.
Tempus writes that UBM's nine-month trading statement proved more enervating than this week's Informa numbers, with overall sales up 4% at £735m and like-for-like growth up 5%. Adjusted operating profit grew 11% to £142m and the company maintained its guidance for underlying growth of up to 5% and improved margins to more than 19.3%. UBM entered the year boasting of a steep discount to peers, but a strong run since summer with shares
up more than a third since early June has closed that window. Management has taken the bold step to cut adrift data services, but the shares, which trade at 12.5 times projected profit, look up with events. Hold until the data services deal is done.