Updates from Virgin Atlantic, Spirent and Carillion

Tesco shares pick up with gains too for miners though US shares drift

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Another slightly recovery for the FTSE 100 on Monday, up 35 points to 6,563.6. Barclays shares climbed 3.43% to 232.30p while Tesco shares were up 2.67% to 176.75p. There were also notable gains for miners: Antofagasta shares pushed 3.82% higher to 706.50p while Anglo American also gained.

Elsewhere, the Dow Jones saw just a 17-point loss, but the index fell under the 17,000 barrier again to 16,991.9.

We start with the news that Virgin Atlantic will scrap its Little Red domestic airline. The daily services to Manchester will end in March while the Scottish services will cease come September. Originally the service was designed to challenge British Airways.

Insufficient slots plus other constraints - including not enough corporate businesses - was blamed for the service's failure as well as well as difficulty with making connecting flights to other Virgin destinations.

"High levels of connections onto Virgin Atlantic's long haul network have always been important to the success of Little Red," the company said.

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Next, Spirent Communications says trading conditions softened in the latter part of the third quarter in the United States and China. That means revenues for the third quarter are expected to be slightly below $110.0 million compared to $107.7 million last year.

It's anticipated that the weakened market conditions affecting primarily Networks and Applications will persist through the fourth quarter of 2014, it says. Demand levels dipped sharply as a result of merger activity and delays in capital expenditure.

"Operating profit will be impacted by the loss of gross profit on lower revenue than expected," adds the company. More detail will be provided at its interim Management Statement on 13 November.

Lastly, it looks like Carillion will be the first company to benefit from UK Export Finance's new Direct Lending Facility, provided by UK Export Finance (UKEF) to boost UK exports.

Under the Direct Lending Facility, HM Treasury has made £3 billion available to support export finance on a first come, first served; UKEF provides funding at the Commercial Interest Reference Rate with partner banks arranging loans.

The latest contract to be secured with the support of UKEF is a £75 million contract to deliver Phase 1 of the Dubai World Trade Centre District development. Last week Carillion was downgraded to Hold from Beaufort Securities.

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