FTSE 100 led by online education specialist Pearson, although AstraZeneca lags the market


The market report with Katie Pilbeam.

The FTSE 100 rose 32 points to 7,546 in Friday morning trading led by online education specialist Pearson, although AstraZeneca lagged the market.

Shares of the pharmaceutical giant fell even as it repeated its full-year forecast after reporting better-than-expected first-quarter results, boosted by sales of its diabetes drug and Covid vaccine -19.

NatWest doubled its first quarter profit to £1.2bn. The national lender has warned that its outlook for the rest of the year will be clouded by rising living costs.

It was a big session for technology overnight in the United States, as Apple reported a record March quarter for revenue, showing strong consumer demand for the company’s products and services. Revenue beat analysts’ expectations of $94.4 billion.

Amazon, however, announced its first quarterly loss since 2015. The e-commerce and streaming giant accused it of a significant write-down in the value of its investment in electric vehicle start-up Rivian.

Back in the UK, Travis Perkins (LSE:TPK) (Travis Perkins (LSE:TPK)) said he was now “more uncertain” about his building materials price inflation forecast, after s previously expected to calm down in the second half of the year. Prices are now expected to account for a larger share of sales growth this year than previously expected for the FTSE 250 company.

Amid a host of quarterly small cap mining updates, European Metals said it was on track to finalize the definitive feasibility study for its flagship asset at Cinovec in the Czech Republic. Discussions are also underway with potential buyers for the project’s lithium and tin.


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