LONDON -- The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES:^FTSE) is still on a rollercoaster ride, having slumped toward the end of last week, gained 108 points yesterday, and then given up every bit of yesterday's gains today. The index is now a good 200 points shy of the 13-year record it set last Wednesday, but it's still up 27% on last June's 52-week low of 5,230 points. When will the index steady? Possibly when we have firmer information on future economic-stimulus policies.
Which companies look likely to pace or lag the FTSE today? Here are three from the various indexes.
Shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum have slipped by 0.7% to 148 pence this morning after the oil firm released further details of its planned move from the Alternative Investment Market to a full listing on the London Stock Exchange.
The firm intends to initially apply for a listing on the LSE's Standard Segment and to seek a Premium Segment listing once it can satisfy all of the necessary regulatory requirements. Along with the move, Gulf Keystone will split the roles of chairman and chief executive and is now looking for an independent nonexecutive chairman.
Sports Direct International shares have fallen back by 1.7% despite the announcement of a "major international expansion." Spreading its European wings, Sports Direct is to acquire a majority stake in two companies -- 51% of Sports Eybl & Sports Experts AG, or "EAG," of Austria, and 60% of Sportland International Group in the Baltic region.
Sports Direct also has an option to acquire the remaining shares of EAG from the owning Eybl family for a period of five years for 15.5 million euros -- the initial stake will cost 10.5 million euros. Despite today's small fall, Sports Direct shares are still up about 70% over the past 12 months.
De La Rue
Security printing firm De La Rue, which produces a lot of the world's banknotes, released preliminary results today -- and the share price dropped 2.4%. Revenue for the year to March 30 fell 8% to £483.7 million, but a rise in the company's operating margin from 11.9% to 13.1% helped it record a 2% rise in underlying pre-tax profit to £59.1 million.
Headline earnings per share came in just 2% higher at 44.4 pence, and the annual dividend was maintained at 42.3 pence per share -- that's a yield of 4.4% on the current price, but it's barely covered. Net debt rose to £77 million from £25 million a year ago, but that's still a pretty modest sum.
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