London stocks closed higher overnight (August 20), helped by gains in consumer and financial stocks. The revelation of Mark & Spencer’s bright earnings outlook has helped ease investor concerns after Britain’s retail sales fell more than expected in July.
The FTSE 100 London Stock Exchange closed at 7,087.90, up 29.04, or +0.41%.
The London Stock Exchange rose on Friday. But it remained its biggest weekly decline since February on concerns about slowing economic growth.
Consumer and export stocks such as Unilever, British American Tobacco and Imperial Brands were up 0.6-2.5%, helped by the pound’s weaker against the dollar.
Retail stocks rose on the heels of Mark & Spencer’s 14.1 percent gain. The company’s full-year profits will exceed expectations.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said UK retail sales fell more than expected in July. As some consumers did not come out to shop to watch the Euro 2020 football match or stay at home, the number of coronavirus cases rose, with July retail sales down 2.5% from month. Jun Contrary to what economists had expected, a 0.4% increase.