FTSE 100 ends the day flat as InterContinental Hotels Group leads the pack

 
James Nickerson
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The FTSE 100 ended 0.1 per cent up today (Source: Getty)

The UK's top share index traded relatively flat on Tuesday but outperformed other European indexes.

The FTSE 100 closed 0.02 per cent up, at 6,353 points, while France's Cac closed 0.50 per cent lower at 4,680 and Germany's Dax finished Tuesday's session 0.01 per cent up at 10,165. However the FTSE 100 is still trading nearly 11 per cent below its all-time highs in April.

The FTSE was led by InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), one of the world's largest hoteliers, whose stock rose 7.14 per cent during the session after it reported a revenue per available room - a key metric for the industry - rise of 4.8 per cent for the three months ending September 30, outdoing analyst expectations of 3.9 per cent.

IHG's chief executive, Richard Solomons was optimistic:

Looking ahead to the remainder of this year, we are encouraged by current trading trends and remain confident in the outlook.

CMC Markets analyst Jasper Lawler said: "Intercontinental Hotels Group was top riser on the FTSE 100, gaining over five per cent after stronger revenues in Europe offset a slight decline in China."

"The group is successfully transitioning from hotel owner to manager with the sale of flagship sites in Hong Kong and London. Strong earnings and pressure to merge with another big hotel rival from activist hedge fund Marcato Capital Management keeps IHS shares interesting."

The second largest riser was Inmarsat, London's very own rocket-launching satellite communications company, which rose 3.36 per cent after the company announced it had signed a 10 year deal with Lufhansa, Europe's largest airline, to provide high-speed internet across its European airline fleet.

Read more: Inmarsat signs 10 year deal with Lufthansa to provide in-flight wifi

Whitbread also continued gains made in morning trading to finish Tuesday's session 3.34 per cent up after the company reported pre-tax profit of £291.3m, up 13 per cent on the same period last year. Sales rose 11 per cent to £1.44bn.

"Today’s outlook statement suggests a similar level of growth in the second half which, we believe, may soothe some market fears that the slowdown might be continuing," analysts at Numis said in a note.

Poor economic data from China continued to act as a dampener on mining stocks, with BHP Billiton shedding 0.23 per cent of its value, while Rio Tinto dropped 0.43 per cent. However, shares in Glencore rose 3.14 per cent. Shares in Anglo American fell 0.32 per cent.

Read more: FTSE 100 dragged down by mining stocks

However the largest decline was AstraZeneca, which dropped 3.15 per cent during the day. Earlier on Tuesday AstraZeneca's stock was downgraded to "underperform" from "neutral" at Credit Suisse.

Analysts at Credit Suisse said the pharmaceutical company showed a marked deterioration in pricing power.

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