Supermarket surge after top boss bows out boosts FTSE 100 - London Report

MORRISONS’ surge buoyed the FTSE 100 yesterday, after the grocer announced that its chief executive had been shown the door following its poor performance during the busy Christmas trading season.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 index was up 0.6 per cent at 6,542.20 points at the close. But weaker commodity stocks on the back of fresh lows for oil and copper prices limited the gains.

Morrisons jumped 4.5 per cent after the grocer said boss Dalton Philips would go. The company said it needed a new leader to return it to growth after lagging rivals under Philips’s five-year watch.

“Morrisons will be hoping that the management changes will give the strategy fresh impetus,” said Richard Hunter, head of equities at stockbrokers Hargreaves Lansdown.

Tesco and Sainsbury’s both rose 3.6 per cent, as data showed the sector posted its strongest performance since August in the Christmas period, with Sainsbury's faring the best.

The biggest decliner on the index was Tullow Oil, down 4.7 per cent.