It was a similar story in the US with the Dow Jones also rising just 0.13% to 18,144, up 24.2 points with Unitedhealth Group up 2% and JP Morgan Chase climbing 1.1%; the Nasdaq Composite touched another record peak while the Nikkei in Japan today climbed to an 18-year high.
The main event this morning is preliminary numbers from Stagecoach. Revenues climb to £3,204.4m from £2,930.0m in 2014 while total operating profit climbs to £227.1m compared to £223.3m a year ago. The full year dividend climbs to 10.5p from 9.5p, a 10.5% hike.
Adjusted earnings per share are in line with expectations, up 2.7% to 26.7p (2014: 26p). There's continued organic growth in UK Bus - a "solid" set of numbers given tight central and local government spending claims Stagecoach, plus increased competition from lower fuel prices.
Let's move onto an update from Ultra Electronics. In a pre-close statement Ultra says markets remain consistent with its March preliminary results and expectations for the full year remain unchanged though performance will be weighted toward the second half.
US uncertainty continues to impact US defence revenues Ulta acknowledges and recent challenges to the Patriot Act are impacting revenues from its US Sotech business "and as previously advised, the Oman contract termination is impacting cash".
"Despite the headwinds," it says, "order intake for the first half is expected to result in a book to bill ratio close to one and our recent acquisitions are performing well." The balance sheet remains strong claims Ultra.
We end on a slight downer from specialty chemicals player Elementis and a warning on overall earnings per share for the year. Though market share and margins are stable, market dynamics for specialty products experienced in the second quarter of the year will likely hit full year results.
For coatings, overall sales for the first six months of the year, on a constant currency basis, are expected to be at a similar level to the same period last year.
Meanwhile for personal care positive trends "in other markets and geographies mean that full year sales, on a constant currency basis, are expected to be ahead of the previous year".
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