Interactive Investor

Must read: gold, oil, bitcoin, Vistry

Our head of investment rounds up the morning's big news.

23rd October 2023 09:08

by Victoria Scholar from interactive investor

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European markets have opened mixed after a tough session for global indices on Friday with the Nasdaq shedding over 1.5%. Sentiment and risk appetite appear to have picked up slightly this morning with safe-haven gold retreating from five-month highs and oil prices easing thanks to diplomatic efforts in the Middle East.

However, the FTSE 100 is still struggling, weighed down by miners like Fresnillo (LSE:FRES), Antofagasta (LSE:ANTO), Glencore (LSE:GLEN) and Anglo American (LSE:AAL), which are trading near the bottom of the UK blue-chip basket. This is on the back of weakness in China with the CSI 300 hitting a more than four-year low overnight.

Bitcoin, meanwhile, is staying gains, up around 2.5% today and is up over 15% in the last month. It is trading above $30,700 driven by hopes that a US bitcoin ETF could be approved. Ahead of next year’s bitcoin halving, Morgan Stanley said thecrypto winter may be in the past and that crypto spring is likely on the horizon.” Other cryptos like Ethereum and Litecoin are also up sharply.


Vistry Group (LSE:VTY) lowered its annual profit forecast and announced plans to cut 200 jobs as part of its restructuring plans. The housebuilder anticipates full-year pre-tax profit will hit £410 million, downgraded from its previous estimate of £450 million. It also said average net debt is likely to be higher than previously expected.

Vistry has been focusing on building affordable homes by working with local governments. But build cost inflation, strong wage growth, falling house prices and rising interest rates have been taking their toll, resulting in a slowdown in activity over summer. Plus, Vistry said it had not seen the normal seasonal pick-up since September.

Last month, Vistry shares surged after it announced plans to focus on affordable homes and said it was planning to return £1 billion to shareholders over the next three years.

Shares in Vistry have opened sharply lower this morning reflecting the reduction in its profit outlook, with the stock extending its recent losses, down around 10% in the past six months. Earlier in October, Jefferies downgraded the stock to a hold from a buy amid cautiousness among analysts towards the sector.

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