1630: Close The FTSE closed up just one point on Friday, but 64 points up over the week. Friday's gains were led by ITV, which soared after Nomura raised its target price on the stock to 130p from 125p before. Meanwhile, miners Randgold and Fresnillo headed the other way after Citigroup cut its ratings for both stocks to 'sell' and reduced their target prices. In today's economic news, it was revealed that petrol prices continue to soar as the cost per litre once again leapt 5.0p in the space of a month, according to the AA. The FTSE closed at 6,328.
It now costs £95.96 to fill up a 70-litre tank, almost £4.0 higher that it did in December. The increase marks the third rise of that amount in the space of a year.
1457: The February University of Michigan consumer-sentiment index has come in at 76.3, from 73.8 the month before. The consensus estimate was for a smaller rise to 74.8. The index is now at its highest level since November.
1415: US industrial production contracted at a 0.1% month-on-month clip in January, but beat expectations when revisions to prior data are taken into account. Estimates for output from the manufacturing sector were revised higher particularly strongly.
1330: The Federal Reserve Bank of New York's manufacturing sector gauge for the month of February has come in at 10.04 (Consensus: -2).
1329: Bank of America-Merrill Lynch believes that the 2008 financial crisis, followed by the Eurozone sovereign debacle, has had a damaging effect on European investment, which is likely to have eroded the Eurozone's potential to grow. "Overall we think the hierarchy of countries has changed with demographics and the crisis. We estimate Germany's trend growth has declined from 1.6 per cent in the run-up to the crisis to 1.0 per cent for the period between 2008 and 2014. Our estimates of trend growth for France, Spain, Italy and UK are 1.4 per cent, 1.8 per cent, 0.7 per cent and 1.9 per cent, respectively for 2015-2020 (from 2.2 per cent, 3.7 per cent, 1.5 per cent and 3.1 per cent in 1995-2007), but recovering from deeper troughs in the 2008-2014 crisis.
1216: Shares of the LSE are lower due to what some analysts are describing as the poor results out of LCH Clearnet.
1215: Nomura has raised its price target on ITV to 130p from 125p before.
1154: Shire is bouncing back from yesterday's losses - which took place on heavy trading volumes. This is how analysts at Credit Suisse see things: "Head of HGT, Sylvie Gregoire, will leave at the end of March. This, combined with the CEO transition, has clearly worried the market. Whilst we strongly believe the current strategy will not change, we appreciate investors may now take longer to accept that additional leadership changes will deliver the required credentials for a highly specialised business such as Shire. Nonetheless, Shire's superior growth profile remains intact." The Swiss broker, nevertheless, has lowered its price target on the company's shares
to 2,350p from 2,410p before.
1051: In a research note issued this morning related to Anglo American's latest results analysts at Jefferies wrote the following: "Finally, incoming Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mark Cutifani is likely to pick some low-hanging fruit opportunities to create value at Anglo, and there is a possibility that the merged Glenstrata attempts to acquire the company at some point." FTSE 100 up 2 to 6,330.
0930: UK retail sales dropped by 0.5 per cent month-on-month in January (Consensus: 0.5 per cent).
0908: Interdealer broker Tullett Prebon has sunk on the FTSE 250 after being drawn into the LIBOR scandal. Reports suggest that an individual at the firm was part of conversations about rigging the yen LIBOR rate, according to the Financial Times. Shares are down 7.99 per cent at 276.58p.
0859: Citi has downgraded its view on the shares of Randgold Resources and Fresnillo down to sell. Worth pointing out perhaps are the close similarities between the former's share price graph over the last twelve months and that of the ounce of gold. The largest and nearest technical support zone for Randgold Resources now comes in just below current levels, towards 5,600p. The same broker has raised its price target on ARM Holdings to 1070p from 835p before. There was some market chatter this morning regarding how Goldman has recently called for a peak in gold prices
0836: London equities have begun the session a tad lower, tracking the mixed close on Wall Street last night and - possibly - weighed down by comments from Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann this morning in favour of a large so-called 'bail-in' in Cyprus. Anglo American is in the lead on the Footsie after unveiling a 15% increase in its dividend per share to 53 cents. Retail sales data for January are released at 9:30 (Consensus 0.5%). FTSE 100 down 10 to 6,318.