Shares in BAT and Imperial Brands tumble after reports suggest the US will ban menthol cigarettes.Read more
British American Tobacco
A sharp fall in the pound against the dollar - now down 0.95% at $1.2852 - means the FTSE 100 is on the up on Monday morning.
The blue chip index is up 0.70% at 7,155.12, led mainly by mining groups. Rio Tinto is the biggest gainer, up 3.84% at £39.97.
British American Tobacco has trimmed its share price fall to 8.34% to £30.37 on the threat of a ban on menthol cigarette in the US. However, it continues to lead the FTSE 100 fallers.
The FTSE 250 is down 0.16% at 19,075.77.
British American Tobacco's share price plunged by 11.4% to £31.06 following a report in the Wall Street Journal which said that the US Food and Drug Administration wants to ban menthol cigarettes.
BAT owns Newport, which is the biggest methol cigarette brand in the US.
The WSJ reports that menthols represented 55% of BAT’s US cigarette sales by volume in its last financial year.
Are there any winners in the FTSE 100 today? There are a few, led by British American Tobacco, which has climbed 4.12% to 3,501.50.
Meanwhile Imperial Brands is up 3.66% at 2,705 and the only other share climbing more than 3% is Fresnillo, up 3.17% at 924.40.
British American Tobacco said that adverse currency movements will reduce earnings growth by 7%.
It did not give any more details about that.
On the plus side, the company is seeing strong growth at its vaping business and said its traditional tobacco business is performing well.
Chief executive Nicandro Durante said: "We remain on track for a strong performance in 2018."
News overnight that the US Food and Drug Administration is taking a closer look at e-cigarettes seems to have unnerved investors in cigarette firms. BAT is down 4.5%, making it the biggest FTSE 100 faller, and Imperial Brands fell 2%.
Ferguson, the plumbing and heating products firm, continued to recover slightly from Tuesday's steep fall in response to weak results. The shares, up 1.5%, are the biggest gainers on the blue chip index.
The FTSE 100 is down 0.6% to 7,460.5 points, while the FTSE 250 is off 0.4% at 20,211.5
Outside the top flight, retailer Ted Baker slid 12% after warning that tough trading continues. And Aston Martin fell another 1%, to £17.90p. The luxury carmaker made its stock market debut yesterday, when the shares fell almost 5%.
British American Tobacco has appointed Jack Bowles as its new chief executive.
Mr Bowles will replace Nicandro Durante, who is retiring after almost 37 years with the company and eight years as chief.
Bowles has been with BAT since 2004 and will become chief executive designate on 1 November and will join the board on 1 January.
After meagre rises and falls this morning, the FTSE indexes seem to have wilted in the heat.
There is barely any movement at all on the FTSE 100, now trading at 7,658.46, and on the FTSE 250, which is down 13.77 points at 20,739.71.
British American Tobacco is now leading the blue chip risers, up 5% at £41.76 following strong interim results.
SSE continues as the biggest faller, down 5.2% at £12.68.
There are lots of results today, so here's a round-up of the headline figures
- AstraZenca: Interim revenue down 1% at $10.3bn. Pre-tax profit down 27% at $786m.
- British American Tobacco: Interim sales up to £11.6bn from £7.4bn. Pre-tax profits up to £3.9bn from £3bn.
- Smith & Nephew: Interim sales up to $2.4bn from $2.3bn. Pre-tax profit fell to $341m from $383m.
- National Express: Interim sales up to £1.2bn from £1.1bn. Pre-tax profit rose to £100.7m from £88.9m.
- Virgin Money: Interim total income rose by 4.8% to £343m. Pre-tax profit rose by 2.7% to £127.2m.