What happened in the FTSE 100 today

The FTSE 100 index experienced a modest uptick of 24.09 points or 0.3%, reaching a closing level of 7,594.78 in today’s trading session. However, the FTSE 250 faced a slight dip of 2.31 points, settling at 19,188.50. The AIM All-Share added 2.24 points or 0.3%, closing at 794.72.

Mining and luxury retail sectors witnessed gains, buoyed by optimism surrounding potential stimulus measures from China. In contrast, London-listed housebuilders encountered difficulties as concerns over UK inflation persisted.

Bank of England Governor Bailey addressed the House of Lords in London, suggesting that while inflation is expected to decrease, the pace of decline will be slower than previously anticipated.

The shares of housebuilding companies were adversely affected by this outlook, with Persimmon experiencing a notable decline of 4.2%. Bellway also faced a drop of 3.4% in its share price. Despite reporting a “sustained improvement in sales demand” during the spring selling season, Bellway highlighted tougher trading conditions during the final three months of the previous calendar year. The company noted a 25% decrease in its overall reservation rate from February 1 to June 4, averaging 190 reservations per week compared to 253 during the same period a year earlier. Furthermore, the reservation rate for the first half ended January 31 was 32% lower year-on-year, standing at 138 reservations per week.

Infrastructure firm Harland & Wolff observed a positive movement in its shares, rising by 9.2%. The company, renowned for its Belfast shipyard spanning 81 acres, announced a collaboration with Macduff Shipyards, Kongsberg Maritime, and Echandia. Together, they plan to establish a UK consortium with the goal of developing and constructing a zero-emissions harbour and coastal tug.

Admiral Group shares saw a significant decline of 6% today following Citi Bank’s decision to downgrade the company’s rating to ‘sell’. Citi Bank’s analysis of industry loss ratio trends revealed that the current consensus estimates for the group were outliers, prompting the downgrade and a negative outlook.

FTSE 250 listed CFD trading platform Plus500 experienced a rally in its shares, surging by 7.7% to 1,497p. The upswing was driven by Plus500’s successful repurchase of approximately 7.3 million shares, equivalent to 8.2% of its share capital, from Odey Asset Management. The deal, valued at £101.3 million, was executed at a rate of 1,383p per share.