Updated April 30th, 2024 at 14:44 IST

London stocks set for monthly gains; HSBC climbs on upbeat profit and buyback

Shares of HSBC Holdings rose by 2.7% after the Asia-focused bank revealed a pretax profit that surpassed expectations.

Reported by: Business Desk

London stock market: London's stock indexes advanced on Tuesday, poised for their second consecutive monthly gains, driven by optimism surrounding upbeat corporate earnings. HSBC Holdings led the gains after reporting strong quarterly results and announcing a $3 billion share buyback program. Meanwhile, Hargreaves Lansdown also surged, buoyed by positive momentum seen in April.

As of 0812 GMT, the FTSE 100 index was up 0.3 per cent, hovering near its recent all-time highs achieved a day earlier. If the current trend persists, the index is on track to register monthly gains of approximately 2.7 per cent.


Shares of HSBC Holdings rose by 2.7 per cent after the Asia-focused bank revealed a pretax profit that surpassed expectations. Additionally, HSBC announced plans for a $3 billion share buyback and the retirement of CEO Noel Quinn.

Ben Laidler, global markets strategist at eToro, noted, "The market is reasonably relaxed and taking the view that there's a chance that pivot to Asia may accelerate with the successor, which the bank has a history of promoting from within."


Standard Chartered also saw a rise of 1.2 per cent.

However, insurer Prudential experienced a decline of 4.5 per cent following a 17 per cent slump in annual premium equivalent sales for its Chinese Mainland joint venture, CITIC Prudential Life, during the first quarter.


Investors are eagerly awaiting the U.S. Federal Reserve's policy decision scheduled for Wednesday to gauge if the central bank will adopt a more hawkish stance.

Laidler commented, "If interest rate cuts are on the horizon both in the UK and Europe and they're coming before the U.S., that's going to be a pretty big catalyst to continue to build on this rally."


The British Retail Consortium reported that prices in British shops rose at the slowest pace in over two years this month, indicating easing inflationary pressures welcomed by the Bank of England.

In the mid-cap FTSE 250 index, which edged 0.2 per cent higher, Hargreaves Lansdown was the standout performer with a 6.2 per cent surge. The investment platform witnessed robust momentum in April as clients invested at the beginning of the tax year to maximise benefits.


(With Reuters inputs.)


Published April 30th, 2024 at 14:44 IST