London Markets: Vodafone rallies after upgrading guidance to lead FTSE 100 higher

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Sign for the mobile phone and telephone service provider brand Vodafone in Birmingham, United Kingdom.

Mobile phone operator Vodafone Group rose as much as 5% as the company lifted its guidance for the year.

Vodafone Group VOD, +5.47%   shares rose as the U.K.-based mobile-phone operator lifted its guidance for fiscal 2020 adjusted earnings to imply 2% to 3% organic growth. Its first-half organic adjusted Ebitda rose 1.4% on 0.3% growth in service revenue, helped by gains in South Africa, Spain and Italy.

On a conference call, Vodafone management defended the pricing of a wholesale deal it struck with Liberty Global’s Virgin Media last week, saying it was line with other deals.

Vodafone provided the largest upward lift to the FTSE 100 UKX, +0.49%  , which rose 0.54% to 7368.29.

Outside of the FTSE 100, B&M European Value Retail BME, -6.51%   tumbled 5.8%. The discount retailer experienced a worse than expected 2.8% decline in adjusted pretax profit as the company reported “continued disappointing financial performance in Germany” and slowing same-store sales growth at its U.K. stores.

Electrocomponents ECM, -11.30%   shares slumped 11.2% as the distributor of industrial and electronics products said the second half started with “modest growth” with “ongoing softness in electronics.”