Sep 14, 2017

FTSE 100 opens lower despite Next boost

The UK market opened lower despite a boost for retail stocks following an upbeat statement from Next. The High Street fashion chain reported a near 10% drop in half-year profits, but raised its full-year sales and profit outlook thanks to "Encouraging" trading in the past three months. Shares in Next jumped nearly 10% and rival Marks and Spencer was up 3%. Despite this, the benchmark FTSE 100 index opened lower, dropping 8.47 points to 7,371.23. Like-for-like sales climbed 3% in the six months to 30 July, while underlying profit rose almost 13% to £177m. In the FTSE 250, shares in Spire Healthcare sank 16% after its half-year profits were hit by the legal settlement to compensate victims of rogue breast surgeon Ian Paterson. The payment contributed to a 75% drop in in Spire's half-year profits to £8.9m. On the currency markets, the pound was little changed against the dollar at $1.3215 and was also flat against the euro at 1.1108 euros.

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