FTSE rises on oil boost; Virgin Money slumps on profit drop

The FTSE 100 rose Thursday, lifted by oil and gas shares, while FTSE 250-listed Virgin Money stock fell as annual profits declined.

The commodity-heavy Footsie index climbed 0.1% in early trade. Oil and gas shares jumped 1%, leading sector gains, as crude prices recovered slightly overnight. However, real estate firms fell 0.5%.

FTSE 100 company Intertek gained 1%, confirming its 2023 outlook. It guides for mid-single-digit revenue growth and margin progression.

Virgin Money stock dropped 2.7% as the FTSE 250 lender posted a 42% profit fall. It declared a 50% lower dividend and warned statutory return on equity will be around 8% versus over 10% previously.

Soap maker PZ Cussons expects minimal surplus cash in its Nigeria unit. Its stock rose 1.0%.

AIM-listed Jet2 shares dipped 2.9% despite the airline lifting profit 47%. It noted £14 million in lost profitability from various disruptions. Bookings and pricing for 2024 are encouraging, it added.