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London stocks steady as BoE rate cut bets unchanged after jobs data

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* FTSE 100 up 0.2%, FTSE 250 adds 0.1%

* Vodafone jumps after meeting market expectations

* Flutter Entertainment drops after Q1 results

* British wages ex-bonuses grew 0.6%

May 14 (Reuters) – London stocks gained some ground on
Tuesday led by advances in the personal goods sector amid labour
market data that showed wages grew stronger-than-expected,
though a basket of mixed corporate updates kept investor
optimism in check.

The benchmark index FTSE 100 was up 0.2% and the
midcap FTSE 250 index edged 0.1% higher.

“A lot rides on CPI from the US tomorrow but we should
prepare for some kind of consolidation,” said Chris Beauchamp,
chief market analyst at IG Group, adding that he did not “expect
a big move.”

British wages excluding bonuses grew by a
stronger-than-expected 6% in the first three months of 2024
compared with the same period a year earlier.

Still, money markets see a 50-50 chance of a June rate cut.

Meanwhile, Bank of England Chief Economist Huw Pill said
Britain’s labour market remains tight by historical standards
despite some signs of a rise in unemployment and a gradual
slowdown in the pace of pay growth.

Shares of personal goods led the gains among
sectors, rising 1.5% as Watches Of Switzerland got a
hike in target price from Goldman Sachs.

Vodafone rose 2.9% after the telecom operator met
market forecasts for the year to end-March.

Flutter Entertainment dragged the travel and
leisure sector to the bottom with a 1.7% drop after the largest
online betting company reported its first quarter results.

Anglo American reversed course and was down 1.6%.
Investors in both companies said BHP Group is likely to
sweeten its $43 billion takeover offer for the second time.

Currys rose 9.3% to the top of FTSE 250 after the
electricals retailer raised its annual profit forecast.

DCC dropped 4.9% and was the top loser on the
blue-chip index after the support service provider reported a
10.6% fall in the annual revenue.
(Reporting by Pranav Kashyap and Shubham Batra in Bengaluru;
Editing by Mrigank Dhaniwala and Nivedita Bhattacharjee)

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