A sea of green greeted the main European indices on Friday including a 0.3% rise in the FTSE 100 and a 0.7% advance in the Dax. It was certainly a ‘risk-on’ day for UK equities, with the likes of Ocado and Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust among the top risers. Miners and packaging companies were also in demand, implying that investors continue to find reasons to stay optimistic despite patchy economic conditions.
Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said:“Education group Pearson has made a remarkable turnaround after years of being in the doldrums. Its second year in a row of better-than-expected financial results shows its repair job wasn’t a quick plaster on the wound.
“There are many moving parts to the business and not everything is doing well, which implies management has to study harder to find solutions to get the company firing on all cylinders. The shares have had a great run, up 44% over the past 12 months, but there wasn’t enough in the latest results to sustain that momentum and so the stock slipped amid investors taking profits.
“Costco’s shares fell in after-hours trading in the US last night after its quarterly earnings disappointed. Seen as a potential beneficiary of the cost-of-living crisis as people search for bargains, the wholesaler is in theory well placed to pick up more business thanks to its ability to offer low prices on a limited range of products.
“Unfortunately, consumers are watching their pennies more than ever and bigger ticket items are not on the menu for many people, which has been the source of Costco’s latest problems.”
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