If you were looking for candidate to come to the tech sector’s rescue it might not have been Meta Platforms given its reputation has taken a real battering of late.
AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould said: “Apparently though, expectations for the company behind Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp were pitched at such a level that merely doing OK was enough to send the shares surging higher.
“Crucially user numbers for Facebook ticked up, giving investors something to celebrate in the here and now with the company’s investment in the metaverse a much longer term and uncertain prospect.
“The FTSE 100 started Thursday on the front foot, with Standard Chartered storming to the top of the FTSE 100 leaderboard off the back of better-than-expected profit and a positive outlook for the emerging markets-focused bank.
“Commodity price volatility helped give Glencore a boost and showed the merits of its trading arm at a time when the company has been forced to cut production forecasts for many of the metals it mines thanks to Covid-related staffing issues.
“Shares in Premier Inn owner Whitbread were also in demand despite a warning from the company over rising costs. The return of dividends feels like a significant milestone in its recovery from the pandemic as it posted a big increase in bookings.
“As a value-based proposition Premier Inn could be well positioned as people look to get away despite cost-of-living pressures.
“Its German business continues to struggle, mainly because of the slower pace in easing Covid restrictions in the country. However, if this part of the group continues to underperform, Whitbread may come under pressure to sell it off.
“Numbers from kitchen supplier Howden Joinery suggest Briton’s appetite for doing up their homes hasn’t disappeared entirely despite squeezed household budgets.”