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McClatchy-Tribune  06/27/2014 9:44 AM ET
Daily Mail, London, market report column [Daily Mail, London :: ]

June 27--Investors waved the red card at Leeds-based leisure group Dart as it became the first company to hold the World Cup in Brazil partially to blame for a shock profits warning.

Shares of the owner of Jet2 airline nosedived to 177.75p before closing 61.25p, or 24pc down, at 190p after chairman Philip Meeson said: 'In view of the current visibility we have of remaining summer 2014 forward bookings, we now expect the current year operating profits to be lower than previous market expectations.'

Demand for leisure travel this summer has apparently been less buoyant than Dart had hoped and market pricing weak. Meeson said perhaps it was also due to the weather or because the financial recovery had not yet taken hold in its homeground of the North of England.

Jet2holidays, the group's package holiday business, last year to end-March almost doubled the number of customers enjoying its value breaks to 830,019. Annual pre-tax profits rose 4pc to pounds sterling 42.1m and the dividend is lifted 47pc to 2.74p per share.

Broker Canaccord Genuity slashed its target price to 288p from 338p on the news.

The Footsie traded within narrow limits before closing 1.5 points up at 6,735.12, ignoring an opening 89-point fall on Wall Street. The Street of Dreams succumbed to early selling after St Louis Federal President James Bullard said US interest rates would rise sooner rather than later.

Housebuilders and associated sectors were in demand after the Bank of England's measures to tighten mortgage lending proved less draconian than had been feared. Governor Mark Carney announced that from October, the Bank of England would allow only 15pc of new mortgages to be at multiples higher than 4.5 times a borrowers' income.

Persimmon jumped 60p to 1259p, Barratt Developments 16.6p to 362.9p, Redrow 16.4p to 267.6p, Taylor Wimpey 5.4p to 109.9p and Bovis Homes 37.5p to 790.5p.

Estate agencies Foxtons put on 17.3p to 283p and Countrywide 26p to 527p. The latter was additionally buoyed by news it is to pay a special dividend of pounds sterling 20m, or 9p a share, with an interim dividend on September 15, 2014. It follows the sale of a 2.2pc stake in newly-floated Zoopla, 1.25p better at 227p.

The AA closed the first day of unconditional trading 2.11pc better at 242p, still 3pc below the issue price of 250p.

Sportech rose 5.75p to 90.75p as it said it was still awaiting the outcome of an appeal case relating to the VAT repayment claim on the 'spot the ball' game held at Upper Tribunal's Tax and Chancery Chamber (UT) at the end of April 2014. The claim including simple interest was for pounds sterling 95m.

After rejecting a bid approach from IIuka Resources, titanium producer Kenmare Resources jumped 3.75p to 15.75p. M&G Investment Management, which sits on a 19.05pc stake, supports the decision.

Seemingly in complete disarray after the ousting of charismatic founder Todd Kozel as chief executive and the departure of non-executive director Jeremy Asher, Kurdistan-focused oil firm Gulf Keystone gushed 14.75p to 95p on revived bid hopes. Rumours were rife that Chevron was stakebuilding.

Buyers chased Hurricane Energy 6.88p or 23pc higher to 36.5p following a positive well test on its Lancaster field West of Shetland. The well significantly exceeded the 4,000 barrels of oil per day rate necessary to demonstrate commercial flow rates.

Broker Cenkos said it was positive news for the future potential of the field, significantly de-risking the basement play across the company's acreage and marked a big step towards the commercial development of the field.

Tangiers Petroleum firmed 0.38p to 14p on news its partner Galp Energia had spudded the TAO-1 exploration well, offshore Morocco. If the well comes good it will be transformational for Tangiers with nearly 750m barrel of oil-equivalent resources being targeted.

Heavy demand on the back of a positive trading update lifted LightwaveRF 10.5p to 37p. With the LightwaveRF app, you can control and monitor your lighting, power and energy using any web-enabled device such as a smartphone, tablet or iPad.

Broker WH Ireland says the number of users has now passed the 20,000 mark. It has also been accepted as a licensed Apple MFi (Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad) developer.

Online gaming group bwin.Party Digital Entertainment advanced 3.35p to 96p after pouring cold water on a recent Bloomberg report suggesting it was considering the break-up or sale of its business. But it did say that it was examining ways to increase shareholder value.

US activist 9pc shareholder SpringOwl has apparently been exerting pressure on the board, led by chairman Philip Yea.

 

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