Market Report: Flybe shares take off as investors jump aboard

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Strong passenger numbers propelled Flybe higher as the regional airline’s turnaround gathers pace.

It recorded a 10.7% increase in passenger numbers to 2.4 million during the second quarter, which amounted to a 13% rise in sales.

Investors climbed on board, shrugging off a 1% fall in revenue per seat to send the shares up 4.11p to 81.36p.

It’s been a long, hard slog and not one without sacrifice.

The company, whose planes jet in and out of City Airport, was forced to lay off hundreds of employees and drop 25 slots at Gatwick two years ago.

Liberum analyst Gerald Khoo says the share price will take off if Flybe can strike deals for its remaining six unused aircraft — an issue he says is overshadowing the turnaround.


Feeling the heat: Glencore

More worrying signs from China — imports fell 20% in September — spelt bad news for miners, including Glencore, down 5.15p to 116p, whose share-price recovery has stalled.

A pull-back for oil — Brent crude is now back at $50.48 a barrel — knocked sector heavyweights BP, down 3.44p at 381.36p, and Shell, which dropped 22.5p to 1791.5p.

It meant the FTSE 100 slipped another 41.03 points to 6330.15 even after a big spike from SABMiller, up 306p, or more than 8%, to 3927.5p, which finally shook hands with Budweiser-brewing behemoth AB InBev over their £68 billion megamerger.

Investors still have concerns over how many hoops the pair will have to jump through in  order to appease regulators, with Shell’s buyout of BG and BT’s £12.5 billion acquisition of EE still to cross the line.

Banking shares were bashed on more global-growth fears but Lloyds, down 1.17p at 74.73p, was the least hit after Jefferies lifted its target price to 104p.

A downgrade to neutral from Citigroup saw Primark owner Associated British Foods lose its appeal, slipping slipped 76p to 3303p, just over a month on from its big US launch in Boston.

UBS said Primark, which hopes to crack America where M&S and Tesco failed before it, had a strong opening, matching H&M and bettering Topshop’s US entry.

On the mid-cap index, Sophos surged 6.7p, or 3%, to 231.9p. That’s above June’s 225p IPO price but still some way below Liberum’s 290p target price, which it slapped on the cyber-security firm today.

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October 13, 2015 |
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