By Barbara Kollmeyer
The leading U.K. stock market index gained on Wednesday and was sitting at levels not seen since early 2020, led by shares of drug company GlaxoSmithKline.
The FTSE 100 gained 0.7% to 7214.19, its fourth straight consecutive rise, while the British pound /zigman2/quotes/210561263/realtime/sampled GBPUSD -0.4081% rose 0.15% to $1.3858.
The biggest gainers in the FTSE 100 were exchange operator London Stock Exchange Group /zigman2/quotes/206625606/delayed UK:LSEG +2.49% , which rose 3%, and retailer JD Sports Fashion /zigman2/quotes/207007202/delayed UK:JD +0.92% , which climbed 3.4%. Among the heavyweights, GlaxoSmithKline’s /zigman2/quotes/209463850/composite GSK +0.77% /zigman2/quotes/200381158/delayed UK:GSK -0.68% shares rose 1.1%.
Decliners included sports-betting group Entain /zigman2/quotes/207493593/delayed UK:ENT +0.37% and U.K. lender Lloyds Banking Group /zigman2/quotes/202285510/delayed UK:LLOY +0.31% /zigman2/quotes/200709414/composite LYG +2.36% .
Shares of Deliveroo /zigman2/quotes/225812915/delayed UK:ROO +2.82% fell over 3%, after the food-delivery company’s interim outlook disappointed. “As reflected in our guidance, whilst we expect that consumer behavior may moderate later in the year, we remain excited about the opportunity ahead and our ability to capitalize on it,” said Will Shu, founder and chief executive officer of Deliveroo, in a statement .
Still, there were positives such as the value and volume of orders coming ahead of what was expected for the first half, and its cash situation looks good, said AJ Bell financial analyst Danni Hewson, in a note to clients.
“News it had hired a prized Amazon executive in a top technology role and German rival Delivery Hero’s decision to take a sizable stake in the business have helped lift the share price and kick-start its rehabilitation and there is at least nothing in Deliveroo’s first-half results to undermine that process,” she said.
In the midcap FTSE 250 /zigman2/quotes/210598417/delayed UK:MCX +0.71% , the biggest gainer was promotional merchandise company 4imprint /zigman2/quotes/207133667/delayed UK:FOUR -2.01% , which climbed 9%, and the largest midcap decliner was wealth-management company Quilter /zigman2/quotes/206003616/delayed UK:QLT +1.07% , which fell 6%.