Tate & Lyle shares slip as fate of sweetener unit is still unknown, while pound rises on rate-hike view

Sometimes no news is bad news.

Tate & Lyle, alongside the release of its earnings, didn’t announce a conclusion to the fate of the artificial sweetener-making primary products division it put up for sale last month. Tate & Lyle TATE, -5.40% shares fell 5%.

“We are exploring the potential to separate our Food & Beverage Solutions and Primary Products businesses through the sale of a controlling stake in Primary Products to a long-term financial partner,” the company said, largely reiterating a comment made in late April. It said discussions with potential new partners were ongoing and it has already paid £19 million ($27 million) for work on the potential breakup.

The company reported a 12% rise in adjusted earnings per share in the year ending March 31, with revenue edging up 1%, while it expects current-year earnings per share to fall, due to significantly lower profits in its commodities division and a rising adjusted effective tax rate.

The pound GBPUSD, +0.37% rose after bullish comments from Bank of England voting member Gertjan Vlieghe, who said a rate rise could be appropriate soon after the first quarter of next year, when the central bank would have a clear view of the post-furlough unemployment and wage dynamics.

The FTSE 100 UKX, -0.19% slipped 0.2%, weighed down by energy producers Royal Dutch Shell RDSB, -2.04% and BP BP, -1.64%.

Johnson Matthey JMAT, -3.97% fell 4%, as the catalytic-converter maker reported in-line results for the year ending March and said operating performance would improve this year.

Engine maker Rolls-Royce RR, +4.85% saw a 5% jump, after plane maker Airbus AIR, +9.29% announced it was increasing jet production.

Read: Airbus ramps up A320 jet production as aerospace giant signals recovery

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