MARKET REPORT: Royal Mail plunges as staff plan further strikes

Shares in Royal Mail hit their lowest level in two years as they became embroiled in a labor dispute.

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) announced 19 additional strike days between October and November within the postal group.

The stock fell 3.5%, or 6.85p, to 187.2p, but there was a silver lining after the CWU said Royal Mail had agreed to continue talks today. If a solution cannot be found, strikes will fall on some of Royal Mail’s peak days.

Wage strikes: Royal Mail shares fell 3.5% but there was a silver lining after the Communications Workers Union said Royal Mail had agreed to continue talks

Workers want a pay rise but, after suffering a loss of £92m in the first quarter, Royal Mail said last week that the CWU had failed to present “viable alternatives which will fund further pay rises”. salary”.

He also called for talks with Acas, the dispute resolution service, as well as for the modernization of his working methods with the union.

JP Morgan analysts believe the strikes will cause customers to use rivals, and Peel Hunt reiterated a “sell” recommendation. Royal Mail floated at 330p in 2013. It is now worth around £1.85billion and its shares have fallen 63% this year.

On another turbulent day in London, the FTSE 100 rose 0.3%, or 20.8 points, to 7005.39 and the FTSE 250 rose 0.1%, or 16.86 points, to 17,320 .97.

A stark warning from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was followed by a dramatic intervention in bond markets by the Bank of England in an effort to restore calm.

Concerns over the health of UK pension funds amid turmoil in bond markets prompted L&G, Britain’s largest provider of workplace pensions, to plunge 5.6%, or 13.1p, to 220.3p while investment group M&G fell 6.2%, or 11.1p, to 168p and insurer Aviva fell 4.9pc, or 19.9p, to 389p.

Stock Watch – CML Microsystems

CML Microsystems rose as a positive update encouraged investors. Ahead of its interim results in November, the chipmaker said it benefited from “strong” trading in the six months to the end of September.

The AIM-listed company expects to generate significantly more revenue than last year, having benefited from favorable exchange rates.

As a result, CML said it now expects revenue and earnings for the year to beat market expectations. The shares rose 11.7%, or 41p, to 391p.

There was better news for Spirax Sarco after its £307.5 million takeover of US firm Durex, which makes temperature sensors used to build semiconductors. The engineer, who bought Parisian industrial heating company Vulcanic in July, rose 2.5%, or 255p, to 10,385p.

Wetherspoons was among the biggest losers in the mid-cap index – down 4.3%, or 19.4p, to 429.2p – after analysts at Liberum issued a grim outlook.

Ahead of the pub group’s preliminary results on October 7, the broker reduced the target price from 600p to 450p and said the company’s current trading would likely have remained “subdued”.

Aston Martin hit a record high as the luxury carmaker completed its £575.8m rights issue. With analysts unsure whether its huge debt can be reduced, it fell 5%, or 7.55p, to 142.25p.

Airport caterer SSP slipped 1.1pc, or 2.3p, to 207.1p after mixed reports from brokers. The company, which owns Upper Crust and Millie’s Cookies, had its price target raised by Morgan Stanley but lowered by Stifel and Deutsche Bank.

Meanwhile, Credit Suisse cut Deliveroo’s target price to 114p from 130p. But the shares rose 3.8%, or 3.24p, to 87.8p.

A co-founder of I3 Energy has resigned as chief financial officer.

Graham Heath, who helped found the oil and gas company in 2014, is leaving immediately. The shares rose 1.8%, or 0.4p, to 23.65p.

Fuel cell maker Ceres Power took a hit after Boston-based Fidelity Investments cut its stake.

The shares fell 2.1%, or 8.2p, to 383.8p. Amigo Holdings has become the latest company rocked by a shareholder revolt against big cat compensation.

At its annual general meeting, 45 percent voted against the lender’s compensation report. The shares rose 5.9%, or 0.22p, to 4.02p.

Getech hailed its “critical role in energy security” as it climbed 3%, or 0.5p, to 17.25p after its order book hit a record high, up 118% to 4 £.8million in the six months to June 30. The energy software company said its revenue rose 11% to £2.7million.

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