Cambridge Index

Cambridge Index falls 0.4%

The Cambridge Index fell 0.4% or 96.1 points to end at 24318.2, as index heavyweights such as AVEVA Group and Johnson Matthey posted weekly losses to their share prices. Berenberg raised its target price on Johnson Matthey, down 4.3%, to 3300p from 3600p and gave a “Buy” rating. DS Smith, up 2.5%, in its trading update for the period since 1 November 2019, announced that it continued to perform well despite macro-economic uncertainty, as Group like-for-like corrugated box volume growth recorded a rise during the second half of the financial year, with positive performances in Iberia, Eastern Europe and the UK. DS Smith expects full year margins to be in line with that achieved in the first half. Abcam, up 9%, announced that it has acquired the entire issued share capital of Marker Gene Technologies, Inc. for an undisclosed amount. Peel Hunt reiterated its “Add” rating on the stock. Separately, Abcam announced today that its half-yearly revenues rose 10.8% to £138.2m, while its profit before tax dropped to 22.8% £26m.

Dialight, up 11.9%, announced that it has appointed its Interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and former Chief Financial Officer, Fariyal Khanbabi, as CEO with immediate effect. Kier Group, up 5.1%, announced that its half-yearly revenues declined to £1.8b from £2b reported in the last year, while loss before tax narrowed to £41.2m from £45.3m. Net debt rose to £242m from £180.5m in 2018. IQGeo Group, up 0.8%, announced today that its FY2019 revenues dropped 21.8% to £7.8m, while its loss before tax nearly quadrupled to £6.2m. Berenberg Bank reaffirmed its “Buy” rating on Frontier Developments, up 0.2%.

Amino Technologies, unchanged at 127.5p, announced that its Annual General Meeting will be held on 2 April 2020. 1Spatial, down 3.7%, announced the addition of 1Data Gateway and 1Integrate v2.6 to its suite of geospatial data management offerings, forming a part of its strategy to cross-sell and increase the accessibility and applicability of 1Spatial solutions to current and potential customers. Science Group, down 8.1%, announced that its FY2019 revenues advanced to £57.2m from £48.7m reported in 2018. The company reported a loss before tax of £1.6m, compared to a profit of £4.9m reported in the previous year. The board declared a final dividend of 4.6p per share.

UK markets finished significantly lower in the previous week, as a surge in the new coronavirus cases outside China fuelled concerns over its impact on global economy. On the data front, the UK house prices jumped to its highest level in 18 months in February, while the nation’s construction PMI advanced in the same month. On the contrary, the British manufacturing and services sector activities, both dropped in February. The FTSE 100 index declined 1.8% to settle at 6462.6, while the FTSE AIM 100 index fell 0.8% to close at 4343. Meanwhile, the FTSE techMARK 100 index lost 1.6% to end at 5395.8.

US markets ended higher in the last week, after the US Federal Reserve (Fed) slashed its key interest rate by 0.5% to a target range of 1%-1.25%, amid intensifying concerns over coronavirus outbreak. In economic news, the US non-manufacturing PMI surprisingly advanced in February, while the nonfarm payrolls grew more than expected in the same month. Moreover, the US unemployment rate dropped to a more than 50-year low in February. The DJIA index rose 1.8% to end at 25864.8, while the NASDAQ index gained 0.1% to close at 8575.6.


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, advanced 9% to 1260p. The company announced that it has acquired the entire issued share capital of Marker Gene Technologies, Inc. for an undisclosed amount, with an aim to bring additional proprietary assay development technologies and labelling capabilities to the firm. Moreover, Abcam disclosed that funding of a substantial portion of the consideration would be from its newly issued shares. Peel Hunt reiterated its “Add” rating on the stock. Separately, Abcam announced today that its half-yearly revenues advanced 10.8% to £138.2 million, while its profit before tax dropped to 22.8% £26 million.

Checkit PLC

Checkit PLC (former Elektron Technology PLC), a provider of fast-moving engineered products, declined 9.5% to 33.5p.

Dialight PLC

Dialight PLC, a provider of electronic lighting and electromagnetic products, soared 11.9% to 239.5p and emerged as the top gainer in the Cambridge Index. The company announced that it has appointed its Interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and former Chief Financial Officer, Fariyal Khanbabi, as CEO with immediate effect.

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, jumped 9.2% to 150p.

Kier Group PLC

Building, civil engineering and property development group, Kier Group PLC, advanced 5.1% to 117.6p. The company, in its interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2019, announced that group revenues declined to £1.8 billion from £2 billion reported in the same period last year. The company’s loss before tax narrowed to £41.2 million from £45.3 million reported in the previous year. The basic loss per share declined to 22.1p from 38.4p in the previous year. Net debt rose to £242 million from £180.5 million in 2018.

LPA Group PLC

LPA Group PLC, a provider of electronic and electro mechanical systems, decreased 9.4% to 96p.

Quixant PLC

Quixant PLC, a provider of specialised gaming platforms designed for gaming and slot machine applications, plummeted 13% to 130p and emerged as the top loser in the Cambridge Index.

Sareum Holdings PLC

Sareum Holdings PLC, which is engaged in the structure-based drug discovery business, surged 9.5% to 0.3p.

Science Group PLC

Science Group PLC (former Sagentia Group PLC), an international technology consulting and IP licensing firm, dropped 8.1% to 215p. The company, in its final results for the year ended 31 December 2019, announced that revenues advanced to £57.2 million from £48.7 million reported in the last year. The company reported a loss before tax of £1.6 million, compared to a profit of £4.9 million reported in the previous year. The basic loss per share stood at 4.5p, compared to earnings of 10.7p in 2018. The company’s board declared a final dividend of 4.6p per share, payable on 12 June 2020 to shareholders on the register as at 22 May 2020.

Xaar PLC

Xaar PLC, a provider of inkjet printing technology, tumbled 9.8% to 34.1p.

Other movers

1Spatial PLC

1Spatial PLC, the spatial big data company, which manages the world’s largest spatial data, eased 3.7% to 26p. The company announced the addition of 1Data Gateway and 1Integrate v2.6 to its suite of geospatial data management offerings, forming a part of its strategy to cross-sell and increase the accessibility and applicability of 1Spatial solutions to current and potential customers. 1Data Gateway, a self-service web-portal for handling often complex data validation, data processing and data enhancement, will join 1Spatial's Location Master Data Management (LMDM) suite of products which ensures spatial data quality and consistency across the enterprise. Meanwhile, 1Integrate v2.6 is a new release for 1Spatial’s core 1Integrate product that provides support for reading and writing Google BigQuery data and better control for dealing with data containing both heights and measures.

Amino Technologies PLC

Amino Technologies PLC, a leader in digital entertainment solutions for IPTV, Internet TV and in-home multimedia distribution, remained unchanged at 127.5p. The company announced that its Annual General Meeting will be held at the offices of finnCap, 60 New Broad Street, London, on 2 April 2020.

DS Smith PLC

DS Smith PLC, a manufacturer and distributor of paper and plastic packaging products, rose 2.5% to 322.1p. The company, in its trading update for the period since 1 November 2019, announced that it continued to perform well despite macro-economic uncertainty, as Group like-for-like corrugated box volume growth recorded a rise during the second half of the financial year, with positive performances in Iberia, Eastern Europe and the UK. Its domestic US business remains robust, although the negative impact of lower US paper export prices continued, following reduced Chinese demand. However, its increasing packaging capacity at the new site is expected to gradually reduce its exposure to this market. DS Smith expects full year margins to be in line with that achieved in the first half.

Frontier Developments PLC

Frontier Developments PLC, a leading independent developer of video games, added 0.2% to 1138p. Berenberg Bank reaffirmed its “Buy” rating on the stock.

IQGeo PLC

IQGeo PLC (former Ubisense Group PLC), a market leader of real-time location solutions, gained 0.8% to 60.5p. Today, the company announced that its FY2019 revenues dropped 21.8% to £7.8 million, while its loss before tax nearly quadrupled to £6.2 million.

Johnson Matthey PLC

Johnson Matthey PLC, a speciality chemicals company and leading provider of precious metal products and environmental technologies, fell 4.3% to 2403p. Berenberg raised its target price on the stock to 3300p from 3600p and gave a “Buy” rating.

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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