FTSE 250 movers: Marshalls surges on results; Acacia slumps on UBS downgrade

LONDON (ShareCast) – (ShareCast News) – London’s FTSE 250 index was up 1.3% to 16,604.10 at 1420 GMT, tracking the broader rally in markets as investors reassessed the implications of the European Central Bank’s additional stimulus measures.
Landscape products group Marshalls (LSE: MSLH.Lnews) was the standout gainer after it posted a 57% rise in full year pre-tax profit to £35.3m on the back of an 8% jump in revenue as it completed the first phase of its plans to return to profits.

Operating profit was £37.5m, up from £25.3m, while underlying profits increased by 34.6% to £52m.

Pensions provider Just Retirement (LSE: JRG.Lnews) was also a high riser after it said six-month pre-tax profits rose to £26.1m compared to a £9.2m loss the same period a year ago.

The company, which is preparing for its merger with Partnership next month, said total new business sales jumped to £1.2bn from £820m, while underlying operating profits rose to £65.2m from £42.6m.

Acacia Mining (LSE: ABG.Lnews) was weaker after UBS (LSE: 0QNR.Lnews) downgraded the stock to ‘neutral’ from ‘buy’ on the back of share price strength and uncertainty over the Bulyanhulu mine.

“We continue to see value potential in ACA over the next 2-3 years if they can deliver at Buly, but do not see a clear catalyst that will unlock this value over the next 12 months,” the bank said.

“After a 70% rally in the share price from its Jan-16 low versus a c20% gain in the gold price, in our view the share price is already discounting a significant improvement in operating performance at Buly.”

Restaurant Group (Other OTC: RSTGFnews) was under the cosh after Deutsche Bank (LSE: 0H7D.Lnews) downgraded it to ‘hold’ from ‘buy’ and cut the price target saying the company’s strategy was dilutive in the medium term.

“The initially dilutive impact of the group’s repositioning strategy and the scale of the implied direct competitive threat (comparable to that laid out by M&B last November, namely around 20% of the estate targeted by other casual dining brands) means that we do not now expect any LFL sales growth for around two years,” the bank said.

Computacenter (LSE: CCC.Lnews) slid as it posted a rise in full year pre-tax profit on the back of its disposal of the RD Trading subsidiary, but said revenue slipped.

For the year to the end of December, the IT (Other OTC: ITGLnews) infrastructure services provider said statutory pre-tax profit increased 66% from the previous year to £126.8m, enhanced by a £42.2m gain on the disposal.

However, revenue dipped 0.3% to £3.05bn.


Marshalls (MSLH) 327.00p 8.46%
Crest Nicholson Holdings (CRST) 525.00p 4.37%
Lancashire Holdings Limited (Other OTC: LCSHFnews) (LRE) 539.50p 3.95%
Hiscox Limited (DI (KSE: 003160.KSnews) ) (HSX) 952.50p 3.81%
Henderson Group (LSE: HGG.Lnews) (HGG) 254.10p 3.80%
Just Retirement Group (JRG) 139.00p 3.73%
IP Group (LSE: IPO.Lnews) (IPO) 169.00p 3.62%
TR Property Inv Trust (TRY) 288.00p 3.60%
Capital & Counties Properties (LSE: CAPC.Lnews) (CAPC) 326.20p 3.46%
SIG (Stuttgart: QIG.SGnews) (SHI) 143.30p 3.32%


OneSavings Bank (Stuttgart: 2OS.SGnews) (OSB) 246.20p -3.87%
Acacia Mining (ACA) 262.00p -3.64%
Restaurant Group (RTN) 394.60p -3.19%
B&M European Value Retail S.A (LSE: BME.Lnews) . (DI) (BME) 262.00p -2.78%
Ted Baker (Other OTC: TBAKFnews) (TED) 2,804.00p -2.40%
Computacenter (Swiss: OXCCC.SWnews) (CCC) 810.50p -1.88%
Allied Minds (Other OTC: ALLWFnews) (ALM) 360.00p -1.61%
Mediclinic International (LSE: ANH.Lnews) (MDC) 919.50p -1.61%
NMC Health (LSE: NMC.Lnews) (NMC (Other OTC: NMCXnews) ) 903.50p -1.58%
Countrywide (CWD) 351.80p -1.57%

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