Shares in paper and packaging firms crumple as Smurfit Kappa warns of slowdown in demand over the summer

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Amazon shares fell for the sixth consecutive day as investors raised concerns about a sharp slowdown in trading in the last three months of the year.

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The stock closed down another 4.82 percent last night in New York — a loss of up to 23 percent from last Wednesday.

The route has wiped out £250 billion from the value of the US technology giant and more than £24 billion from the fortune of founder and top shareholder Jeff Bezos.

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Smurfit Kappa, which makes boxes and packaging for the likes of Unilever and Nestle, said volumes fell 3% in the three months to the end of September

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Amazon shares are now at their lowest level since the first Covid lockdown and the company is once again valued at less than $1 trillion (£870 billion). At its peak last year, it nearly doubled.

Tech stocks have been hit this year as rising inflation, rising interest rates and a dark outlook for the global economy have been questioned by their high valuations.

Amazon’s sales accelerated last week when it warned sales in the crucial final quarter, including Christmas, would be much lower than expected, though still up £121bn to £128bn. It also said profits in this period could fall to zero from £12 billion a year ago.

As the Federal Reserve raised US interest rates again last night by 0.75 percentage points, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.55 percent, the S&P 500 2.5 percent and the Nasdaq 3.36 percent.

Back in London, the FTSE 100 was down 0.6 per cent or 42.02 points at 7144.14 and the FTSE 250 was up 0.1 per cent or 21.85 points at 18217.75.

Shares of the paper and packaging firm edged up by Smurfit Kappa after warnings of a slowdown in summer demand.

The FTSE 100 company, which makes boxes and packaging for companies such as Unilever and Nestle, said sales fell 3 per cent in the three months to the end of September. This attributed it to inflation, the Ukraine war and changes in consumer demand.

Stock Watch – Allied Minds

Allied Minds investors have voted in favor of delisting their shares from the group’s London stock exchange.

The intellectual property investor, which was once backed by fund manager Neil Woodford, said he would delist shares on November 30.

“We believe this is the right move as we seek to derive value from the remaining portfolio of investments,” said interim chairman Bruce Felling.

Shares that floated at 190p rose 1.17 percent, or 0.1p, to 8.65p in 2014.

The company compensates for some of the fall in demand with a price increase of up to 3 percent. Revenue rose 33 percent to £8.34 billion in the nine months to September, while profit rose 43 percent to £1.54 billion.

Smurfit said its profit for the year should be closer to £2 billion. But shares sank — with Smurfit Kappa down 2.3 percent, or 66p, to 2833p, while Mondi’s fell 1.35 percent, or 20p, to 1459p and DS Smith fell 1.9 percent, or 5.5p, to 286.40p.

British American Tobacco, the maker of Pall Mall cigarettes, fell 5.51 percent, or 191p, to 3274p after Goldman Sachs downgraded its rating from ‘buy’ to ‘neutral’ and lowered its target price from 4050p to 3800p.

Shares of Metro Bank rose 13.46 per cent or 9.80p to 82.60p after returning to profit in September and did not see borrowers struggling with repayments amid a cost of living crisis.

Wear Group rose 1.79 per cent, or 28.50p to 1620.50p, on the news that it remained on track to grow its revenue and profit for the year. The Glasgow-based engineering firm said its orders grew 19 per cent in the three months to September.

Meanwhile, Foxton, the estate agent, rose 3.33 per cent, or 1p, to 31p when it launched a share buyback program of up to £3 million.

While the economic turmoil and rising inflation have been ‘challenging’ for Morgan Sindel, the construction group said its ‘large and high-quality workload’ means it is on track to meet expectations. Orders rose 3 per cent to £8.8 billion at the end of September.

But shares fell 4.06 percent, or 64p, to 1514p after Peel Hunt lowered the company’s target price to 2200p.

In Hiscox, London insurer Lloyd’s rose 5.92 percent, or 53.20p, to 951.60p after its Re&ILS business, its written premiums, crossed the billion-dollar mark due to favorable market conditions.

In Hiscox as a whole, the amount of written premiums increased 6.3 percent to £3.2 billion in the nine months to September.

Credit: www.thisismoney.co.uk /

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