MARKET REPORT: Coronavirus pandemic star Novacyt is in demand again after it was announced that it will launch a range of new Covid test kits
Pandemic star Novacyt was in demand again after it was announced that it would be launching a range of new Covid test kits.
These include devices that can detect the variant of the virus, first discovered in India, which is the latest mutation that worries scientists, as well as Covid antibodies.
An expanded version of an existing test is also expected to play a key role in airport testing and approval programs to and from certain countries. This could be crucial to restarting international travel this year.
Pandemic star Novacyt was in demand again after it was announced that it would be launching a range of new Covid test kits
Novacyt also announced that it has been added to the Public Health England (PHE) Approved Supplier List for many of its Covid products. Being on that list means PHE and NHS hospitals can buy equipment from two of Novacyt’s main divisions – Primerdesign and Microgen Bioproducts – without entering into individual contracts.
Shares rose 19.6 percent, up 72.6p to 443.1p on the news.
Paris-based Novacyt was a fast engine when the pandemic broke out. It was one of the first companies in the world to develop an accurate Covid test and has always been one step ahead ever since.
A new kit was launched in February to detect the deadly strains of the virus in South Africa, Brazil and Kent.
Stocks had been 15p before the first coronavirus breakthrough, but later rose to 1,194p, an increase of more than 9,000 percent, and became a darling of the stock market. Novacyt’s spike was in stark contrast to another key player in the Covid response – vaccine maker Astrazeneca. Shares fell 1.4 percent, or 109 pence, to 7,564 pence after reports the risk of developing a serious blood clot after receiving the sting could be worse than thought.
Figures from the Medical Healthcare Products and Regulatory Agency (MHRA) showed that the number of cases rose from 79 to 168 and the number of deaths from 19 to 32, although the regulator claims that the benefits of getting the risks for most People far outweigh.
The FTSE 100 was almost unchanged at 0.32 points to 6938.56, while the FTSE 250, which is more exposed to domestic events, rose 0.03 percent or 7.39 points to 22,372.26.
Both benchmarks were barely moved by positive data showing that the reopening of the economy had brought consumer confidence and spending back above pre-pandemic levels.
Markets: The FTSE 100 remained almost unchanged, up 0.32 points to 6938.56, while the FTSE 250, which is more exposed to domestic events, gained 0.03%
Mid-cap office provider Workspace Group was down 4.5 percent, or 37.5 pence, to 798.5 pence after Barclays double downgraded its rating and upgraded it from “overweight” to “underweight”. Analysts said the UK’s return to work was too optimistic – the price target was lowered from 745p to 700p. Elsewhere, Audioboom said the number of listeners to its podcasts has increased since Covid’s bans continued.
The group, backed by real estate tycoon Nick Candy, said it sees “strong sales momentum” and its sales will be significantly higher than expected. Shares in the group, which hosts podcasts for The Spectator magazine and former Great British Bake Off host Sue Perkins, rose 4.6 percent, or 30p, to 690p.
Harry Potter publisher Bloomsbury was also a hit after bolstering its academic publishing branch by buying parts of Red Globe Press from Macmillan Education for £ 3.7 million. It has a catalog of 7,000 titles aimed at students.
It comes a few weeks after Bloomsbury announced it would beat earnings expectations after reading delivered a “ray of sunshine” during the third lockdown. Bookworms grabbed copies of Sarah Maas’ new novel, A Court of Silver Flames, and Anna Norths Outlawed. The shares rose 8.2 percent, rising 23p to 303p.