Miners retreat after iron ore prices slide

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Miners topped the blue-chip losers list in mid-morning due to a 9.5% slide in iron ore prices in China.

The commodity price has seen a rally over the past week as demand outstripped supply, so analysts expect it to claw back losses shortly.

() was the hardest hit with a 3% dip to 471.1p, while Antofagasta plc (), () and () were all down 2% to 1,772.75p, 2,208.25p and 6,181.5p respectively.

Elsewhere, () shed 3% to 70.46p after saying that it’s unclear whether the current good trading reflects strong underlying performance or pent up demand.

The stationary retailer has reopened most of its sites, except those in the Republic of Ireland due to resume trading on Monday.

Online sales remain “significantly” ahead of pre-pandemic levels even if they have dipped after the reopening of stores.

9am: Velocity Composites rises after signing new contract with major client

Velocity Composites PLC () rose by a quarter to 25p on Friday after signing a new three-year contract with a major Tier 1 aerostructures manufacturer based in Hampshire.

It has a value of £4mln per year, including the awarded £1.4mln of new business on the A350, A400M and Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft platforms, and will continue as a major contributor to revenues through to 2024.

The AIM-listed firm, which is a supplier of advanced composite kitting solutions and material management services to the aerospace composites industry, said this is an important milestone.

Elsewhere, () advanced 7% to 145p after signing a crypto climate accord (CCA) in partnership with DMG Blockchain Solutions to promote the decarbonisation of the cryptocurrency industry.

Both firms are also jointly developing a maiden working group to use new technologies that will increase the transparency of the renewable energy sourcing of crypto mining.

The CCA, which has 40 signatories including 20 prominent crypto firms, also outlines several objectives to decarbonise the industry including reaching net-zero emissions from electricity consumption by 2030 and developing standard, tools and technologies to accelerate the adoption and verification of 100% renewables-powered blockchains by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) COP30 conference in 2025.

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