Cambridge Index

Cambridge Index climbs 1.1%

The Cambridge index advanced 298.3 points or 1.1% to close at 27,950.5, as three out of the top five index heavyweights posted weekly gains to their share prices. Bernstein restated its “Outperform” rating on Johnson Matthey, down 3.3%, with a target price of 4100p. Bank of America trimmed its target price on DS Smith, down 4.6%, to 400p from 450p and gave a “Neutral” rating. UBS Group raised its target price on the stock to 365p from 358p and issued a “Neutral” rating. Abcam, up 6%, announced that it has appointed Michael Baldock as the Chief Financial Officer with effect from 03 February 2020. Frontier Developments, up 6.3%, in its trading update for the six months ended 30 November 2019, announced that its total revenue significantly dropped to £32m from £64.7m in the same period last year. Further, the company stated that it anticipates annual sales to be between its previously set targets of £65m to £73m. The company’s interim financial results for the six months ended 30 November 2019 are expected to be released on 05 February 2020. Liberum Capital reiterated its “Buy” rating on the stock.

Horizon Discovery Group, up 0.4%, announced that it has entered into an Option Agreement and a Research Agreement with Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (US), enabling it to obtain a licence for the provision of a novel base editing technology for special use in therapeutic, diagnostic and services applications.

Tristel, down 0.9%, announced that it expects to publish its interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2019 on 24 February 2020. Kier Group, down 5%, in its trading update for the period ended 31 December 2019, announced that performance was in line with its expectations. Separately, the firm announced that it is planning to cut 1,200 jobs by June 2020, in an attempt to turnaround the business. Liberum Capital affirmed its “Buy” rating on the stock. Peel Hunt reiterated its “Buy” rating on the stock. Xaar, down 9.7%, in its trading update for the year ended 31 December 2019, announced that it expects revenues to be around £46m, following upbeat performance in the second half of 2019. Its cash balances (including cash held for investment in Xaar 3D) as at 31 December 2019 were £25.4m. Peel Hunt reaffirmed its “Buy” rating on Gaming Realms, down 10%.

UK markets finished higher in the previous week, supported by gains in housebuilding and retail sector stocks. The UK economy grew at its slowest pace since June 2012 in November, whereas the British retail sales unexpectedly fell in December. The UK industrial production and manufacturing production, both, dropped more than expected in November. The FTSE 100 index advanced 1.1% to settle at 7674.56, while the FTSE AIM 100 index gained 1.7% to close at 5000.73. Meanwhile, the FTSE techMARK 100 index climbed 2% to end at 6075.94.

US markets ended in positive territory in the last week, after the US Senate approved the US-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) Free Trade Agreement. In economic news, the US Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index jumped to its highest level in 8 months in January, while the nation’s housing starts accelerated at its fastest pace in 13 years in December. US inflation rose less-than-expected in December, while the nation’s Michigan consumer sentiment index dropped in January. The DJIA index advanced 1.8% to end at 29348.1, while the NASDAQ index jumped 2.3% to close at 9388.94.


The Cambridge & FTSE AIM 100 Index Movement

Sector Break-up - Market Cap.

Sector Break-up - No. of Comps.

Index movers

Abcam PLC

Abcam PLC, a producer and distributor of research-grade antibodies, increased 6% to 1400.0p. The company announced that it has appointed Michael Baldock as the Chief Financial Officer with effect from 03 February 2020.

AVEVA Group PLC

Engineering technology company, AVEVA Group PLC, surged 6.6% to 5055.0p and emerged as the top gainer in the Cambridge Index.

Bango PLC

Bango PLC, a developer and provider of technology for mobile phones, tumbled 9.4% to 106.5p.

Cambridge Cognition Holdings PLC

Cambridge Cognition Holdings PLC, which specialises in computerised neuropsychological tests, slumped 5.9% to 32.0p.

Frontier Developments PLC

Frontier Developments PLC, a leading independent developer of video games, jumped 6.3% to 1320.0p. The company, in its trading update for the six months ended 30 November 2019, announced that its total revenue significantly dropped to £32.0 million from £64.7 million in the same period last year. Further, the company stated that it anticipates annual sales to be between its previously set targets of £65 million to £73 million. The company’s interim financial results for the six months ended 30 November 2019 are expected to be released on 05 February 2020. Liberum Capital reiterated its “Buy” rating on the stock.

Gaming Realms PLC

Gaming Realms PLC (former PDX PLC), an online gaming operator, developing free-to-play and real-money products, sank 10% to 9.7p and emerged as the top loser in the Cambridge Index. Peel Hunt reaffirmed its “Buy” rating on the stock.

LPA Group PLC

LPA Group PLC, a provider of electronic and electro mechanical systems, declined 8.1% to 96.0p.

Sareum Holdings PLC

Sareum Holdings PLC, which is engaged in the structure-based drug discovery business, advanced 5.9% to 0.5p.

SDI PLC

SDI PLC (former Scientific Digital Imaging PLC), a digital imaging technology company, climbed 6% to 88.0p.

Xaar PLC

Xaar PLC, a provider of inkjet printing technology, plummeted 9.7% to 47.3p. The company, in its trading update for the year ended 31 December 2019, announced that it expects revenues to be around £46 million, following upbeat performance in the second half of 2019. Its cash balances (including cash held for investment in Xaar 3D) as at 31 December 2019 were £25.4 million. Peel Hunt reaffirmed its “Under Review” rating on the stock.

Other movers

DS Smith PLC

DS Smith PLC, a manufacturer and distributor of paper and plastic packaging products, dropped 4.6% to 358.6p. Bank of America trimmed its target price on the stock to 400p from 450p and gave a “Neutral” rating. UBS Group raised its target price on the stock to 365p from 358p and issued a “Neutral” rating. 

Horizon Discovery Group PLC

Horizon Discovery Group PLC, the life science company supplying research tools to organisations engaged in genomics research and the development of personalised medicines, rose 0.4% to 145.0p. The company announced that it has entered into an Option Agreement and a Research Agreement with Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (US), enabling it to obtain a licence for the provision of a novel base editing technology for special use in therapeutic, diagnostic and services applications. Following the company’s decision to exercise this option, Rutgers granted an exclusive license authorizing the company to sublicense the technology to entities willing to use it for therapeutic development.

Johnson Matthey PLC

Johnson Matthey PLC, a speciality chemicals company and leading provider of precious metal products and environmental technologies, eased 3.3% to 2841.0p. Bernstein restated its “Outperform” rating on the stock with a target price of 4100p. 

Kier Group PLC

Building, civil engineering and property development group, Kier Group PLC, declined 5% to 78.4p. The company, in its trading update for the period ended 31 December 2019, announced that performance was in line with its expectations. Also, the company added that it continues to receive new contracts across the markets. The company expects to publish its interim results for the six-month period ended 31 December 2019 by 19 March 2020. Separately, the firm announced that it is planning to axe 1,200 jobs by June 2020, in an attempt to turnaround the business. Liberum Capital affirmed its “Buy” rating on the stock. Peel Hunt reiterated its “Buy” rating on the stock.

Tristel PLC

Tristel PLC, a provider of infection control and water treatment products, fell 0.9% to 385.0p. The company expects to publish its interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2019 on 24 February 2020.

The Cambridge & FTSE AIM 100 Index Movement

Sector Break-up - Market Cap.

Sector Break-up - No. of Comps.

Table 1 Cambridge Index  Weekly Top 5 Gainers

Table 2 Cambridge Index  Weekly Top 5 Losers

Table 3 Cambridge Index  Top 5 Weights

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