1630: Close It was reported today that UK retail sales volumes rose by 0.6% month-on-month (2.5% year-on-year) according to the ONS. Consensus expectations were for a gain of 0.4% (2.1%). Looking abroad, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia's manufacturing sector gauge for October came in at 5.7 points versus the previous month's reading of -1.9 (Consensus: 0), while US weekly initial jobless claims rose by 46,000 last week, to reach 388,000 (Consensus: 365,000). In UK companies, IMI was a top riser after being given a boost by RBC Capital, which reiterated its outperform rating on the stock. The FTSE 100 closed up rose six points to 5,917.
1557: Barclays has just warned that it will incur in a loss for the third quarter after revealing a shock 700m pound provision against payment protection insurance (PPI) compensation claims.
1556: Capital Shopping Centres is down after Barclays placed shares
in the company, according to two people familiar with the deal, Bloomberg reports.
1504: The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia's manufacturing sector gauge for the month of October has come in at 5.7 points versus the previous month's reading of -1.9 (Consensus: 0).
1451: Here is some commentary from Credit Suisse on fund manager Man, currently the worst performer on the FTSE 350: "Net outflows during the third quarter 2012 were 2.2bn dollars (vs. Credit Suisse's estimate of 2.1bn dollars) vs. -1.4bn dollars in the second quarter of 2012 with a quarter-on-quarter increase attributable to weaker sales whilst redemptions were modestly lower quarter-on-quarter. Management re-iterated that the previously announced cost savings remain on track, but we believe these are now factored into the share price and a sustained improvement in AHL performance (circa 14% below HWM) will be required to drive the shares higher. We leave our target price unchanged at 94p and retain our Neutral rating. The shares are trading on an estimated 2013 fiscal year price-to-earnings multiple of 14.9-times which appears fully valued, in our view."
1415: According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) premium traffic rebounded strongly in August, up by 8.5 per cent. Although the trade body does warn about extrapolating this improvement in premium travel and seat mix into the months ahead, adding that it was narrowly based, much of the increase came from within Europe and across the North Atlantic. North Atlantic traffic is precisely one of IAG's strong points. Shares of IAG moved up the leader board on the back of this data. FTSE 100 down 12 to 5,899.
1331: US weekly initial jobless claims rose by 46,000 last week, to reach 388,000 (Consensus: 365,000), as the seasonal factors evident in last week's data were unwound.
1232: Footsie has slipped into the red in the afternoon session. Stateside, banking titan Morgan Stanley has topped market expectations with its third quarter figures, which revealed a post-tax loss of just over a billion dollars, versus a profit of 2.2bn dollars in the corresponding period of last year. Adjusted earnings per share were 28 cents a share, which was ahead of the Street's consensus forecast of 25 cents. FTSE 100 is down 6 at 5,905.
1038: As part of their latest global labour survey analysts at Credit Suisse believe that Capita, Intertek and Experian (all rated out-perform) are "all net beneficiaries of stable to improving employment in the UK and US." The bank expects market conditions for the staffing agencies will remain challenging. In this sector it prefers Adecco and Robert Walters, both of which are expected to out-perform the sector. It takes take a more cautious view on Michael Page (rated under-perform) on the grounds of exposure to the permanent placement and European markets and SThree (rated under-perform) because of its continental European exposure. As an aside, the working session of today's European Council will start at 17:45 and will be followed by a dinner, and it will then resume on Friday morning. The press conference is thus expected to be held Friday afternoon.
1010: RBS economists are just out commenting on the latest Chinese data, saying that at least now we can say that the country is not headed for a hard landing. Of interest, before this morning's releases Nomura was out in the following regard: "We take these comments [from Premier Wen Jiabao] to suggest that there may be more positive news coming today when Q3 GDP numbers and September data are released, reinforcing our view that growth will likely pick up above 8% in Q4 (Consensus expects growth to be flat in Q4)." On another note, ING is said to be preparing the sale of its Thai and HK units for $2.2bn. FTSE 100 near day's highs, up by 12 to 5,923.
0946: Spain's Treasury has just sold 4.614bn euros in medium and long-term debt. Yields fell across the board while bid-to-cover ratios improved for the 3 and 4 year debt on offer. Following the sale the yield on the 10 year bond is off by 7 basis points to 5.42 per cent.
0934: Interesting comments from the IFO's Sinn on Bloomberg TV to the effect that if what is wanted is to create a pan-European state then that is what should be done, but he does not believe that it is correct to severe the link between banks and their sovereigns.
0930:UK retail sales for the month of September have come in at an 0.6 per cent month-on-month rate of increase (Consensus: 0.4 per cent). Excluding auto fuel they rose by another 0.6 per cent (Consensus: 0.6 per cent).
0808: Miners are settng the pace early on in London after fairly positive gross domestic product (GDP) data for China in the third quarter. China's GDP was up 7.4 per cent year on-year,as expected. Results from lager brewer SABMiller have fallen flat, however. FTSE 100 is up 11 at 5,922.