By Steve Goldstein
U.K. stocks surged Tuesday to kick off the new year, with reopening plays rallying and stay-at-home stocks languishing.
The FTSE 100 /zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed UK:UKX +1.19% surged 1.4% after a three-day break. Across the London Stock Exchange, airline and travel stocks surged, led by a 13% rally for Wizz Air /zigman2/quotes/210449062/delayed UK:WIZZ +0.78% , the Central European focused carrier that nearly quadrupled its December passenger traffic.
International Airlines Group /zigman2/quotes/208070069/delayed UK:IAG +2.11% , TUI /zigman2/quotes/207049334/delayed UK:TUI -3.68% , easyJet /zigman2/quotes/202825892/delayed UK:EZJ +3.15% and Carnival /zigman2/quotes/210414141/delayed UK:CCL -2.96% each surged on hopes for the travel sector. A 5 p.m. news conference scheduled by U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson to address rising omicron infections is not expected to result in tighter restrictions.
On the flip side, veterinary drugmaker Dechra Pharmaceuticals /zigman2/quotes/209485565/delayed UK:DPH +1.47% and grocery delivery firm Ocado /zigman2/quotes/207225647/delayed UK:OCDO +1.59% each struggled.
“Investors prefer focusing on a glass half full rather than a glass half empty at the start of the year,” said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior analyst at Swissquote.