Market Report: Carr's feed is not to investors' taste

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Shares in Carr’s Group turned sour today as cheap milk prices nibbled away at the agricultural firm’s profits.

The company, which makes flour and feed blocks for livestock, as well as farm machinery, said pre-tax profits for the first half of its financial year slipped 1% to £10.5 million, and revenues dropped 9% to £189 million.

Fortunately for the business, it “suffered no adverse financial impact” from the December floods — which affected its Lancaster feed mill and a major customer of its Cumbrian flour mill — thanks to its comprehensive insurance policy. 

Chief executive Tim Davies warned that depressed milk and livestock prices will continue this year and next and “will directly adversely impact our UK farm customers”. The shares fell 4.5p to 148p.

Markets continued to track the price of oil in choppy early trade which saw the FTSE 100 up 9.18 points at 6213.59.


Traders were planning to take cues from Wall Street (Timothy A. Claro/AFP/Getty Images)

Traders said investors will likely wait until the unofficial start of the US earnings season later — when Alcoa reports first-quarter results — before making bolder bets. 

Punters had a flutter on the bookies after an outsider claimed the Grand National. Rule the World, at 33/1, galloped to victory in a great result for the gambling companies, as well as owner Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary: William Hill was 2.7p wealthier at 332.7p and Ladbrokes 0.1p better off at 117.2p.

There was more good news for O’Leary as analysts at Barclays were feeling generous and added his budget airline to its list of stocks to Buy. The company’s LSE-listed shares though were still off 0.05p at 13.1p.

Video: Rule the World wins the Grand National

Aggreko powered down 38p to 1006p as UBS alerted investors to the power rental firm’s “structural” troubles. “As the power rental market has matured, we think Aggreko’s competitive advantage has been eroded,” said the Swiss broker as it cut its rating to Sell.

Eclectic Bar Group, soon to be renamed The Brighton Pier Group plc, jumped as it returned to trading after its £18 million takeover Brighton Pier’s operator. Executive chairman and serial entrepreneur Luke Johnson upped his stake to 24% in the deal, which boosted the stock by 16.5p to 75p.

Gaming Realms, the AIM-listed mobile gambling group, remained  unmoved at 20.5p after launching for Britain’s Got  Talent-themed slot games.

The launch comes after it signed a three-year deal with Fremantle Media, the show’s producer.

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April 12, 2016 |
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