LONDON -- The FTSE 100
The performance of individual companies is what matters to Fools, and there was plenty of action during the week.
Former state telecoms monopoly BT Group put on 10.4 pence (4.8%) to 227.5 pence in the week it announced a 15% rise in its interim dividend to 3 pence per share, and that helped to reverse a mini-slide in the price over the past month.
But some caution is called for, as BT's dividend payout is heavily weighted toward the second half, and the rest of the company's first-half figures were a little mixed. Although pre-tax profit for the six months was 8% up on last year at 1.19 billion pounds, revenue fell 7% to 8.96 billion pounds during the period
Consumer electronics chain Dixons Retail had a great October, as the company's recovery continues. This week the price soared by 5.3 pence (26%) to 25.8 pence, taking it up nearly threefold since its year-low of 9.1 pence.
After sliding for several years, Dixons' earnings appear to be back on the up again, with strong earnings growth forecasted for this year and next. But it looks like it will be a while before there is any meaningful resumption of dividends.
FTSE 100 oil and gas explorer and producer BG Group shocked the market with a profit warning, leading to a 233 pence (18%) fall in its price to 1,091 pence. It appears that average production for the year will most likely rise by only 3%, to 660,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd), and that production will be flat next year.
The move confounded analysts, who had been expecting around 700,000 boepd for this year, with a production increase of around 10% next year.
Centamin, the gold miner extracting the precious shiny stuff from Egypt, hit the news this week when reports surfaced that its Sukari mine concession had been cancelled, and the stock price plummeted by 35% to 60 pence before trading was temporarily suspended.
The company countered by saying that no formal judgment has been made, and it has raised an objection that will delay the final outcome. After trading in the stock was resumed, the price recovered a little but finished the week nearly 40% down to 60.5 pence.
As usual, this week's FTSE trading provided some large share-price movements -- and perhaps some buying opportunities. Indeed, legendary investor Warren Buffett has spent more than $1 billion buying the shares of one of the UK's most successful FTSE large-caps.
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