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Investors look to banks in reporting season

Investors look to banks in reporting season

Category: Investments

Updated: 04/03/2011
First Published: 04/03/2011

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Investors looked to stock their portfolios with shares of the UK's banks this week, as many of the main players delivered their 2010 results.

Figures from TD Waterhouse show that customers bought 20% more shares in the week until 1 March, as investors appeared ready to capitalise on anticipated share price hikes as several of the FTSE 100 banks reported full-year results.

Lloyds Banking Group accounted for more than a third of top ten stock buys in the week, remaining at the summit for the second week in a row.

The part-nationalised bank announced on 25 February that it had returned to profit for the first time since it was bailed out, posting a pre-tax figure of £2.2 billion.

"Elsewhere in banking, HSBC Holdings announced its full-year results for 2010 on Monday, entering the buys in third place week ending March 1," said Darren Hepworth, trading and customer service director at TD Waterhouse.

"A pre-tax profit of £11.8bn more than doubled the banking giant's 2009 results, but analysts had anticipated even better figures causing the company's share price to slump from 727.30p on February 28 to 658p at close on March 1."

The bank was the third most purchased stock in the week and did not figure in the sells top ten.

Announcing losses of £1.1 billion, the Royal Bank of Scotland's chief executive's prediction that the bank's share price would remain volatile proved accurate, with investors selling the stock in large numbers.

The bank was the most sold share in the week, although it was also the fifth most purchased.

Meanwhile, geopolitical concerns in the Middle East and North Africa seem to remain on the investment agenda as events combined to keep the FTSE 100 below the 6000-mark in the week ending March 1, closing at 5935.76.

"Centamin Egypt (CEY) remained a top ten favourite but dropped five places to seventh in this week's buys table and one place to sixth in the sells," said Mr Hepworth.

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