This week: Axis Shield on the defensive, Boomerang JV to bring better returns, Cello in tune with forecasts and sparkling valuation for Stellar 

The FTSE 100 fared well during the middle of last week rising 50 points, but closed at similar levels to the week’s opening, whilst the AIM All Share increased by some 0.9%. The Greek debt crisis was helped by news that European banks were planning to club together to potentially allow Greece more time to repay its debts, but there was fresh worry in the form of the crisis potentially focusing attention again on Italy and Spain. Further, UK CPI inflation fell to 4.2 per cent in June, which was widely forecasted to hold at 4.5%, and interest rates continued at the 0.5% level they have been for the last 27 months. The week ahead sees unemployment figures released on Wednesday, US inflation figures and a BoE report on its programme of quantitative easing.

Activity on AIM- an update

Following our recent “Activity on AIM” comment market activity has continued in line with the trends outlined. The month of June saw thirteen companies admitted to the market of which nine came from the UK and four from overseas. During the same period eighteen companies left AIM, although three of those left the junior market to move to the main list Allied Gold Mining (ALD 192.5p/£384.93m), Cape (CIU 574.5p/£678.34m) and Park Plaza (PPH 294.5p/£123.15m).

This month has already seen the arrival of Smart Metering Systems (SMS 75p/£62.5m) and Waterlogic (WTL 158p/£122.62m) on AIM with a third, Bayfield Bayfield Energy a successful fundraise of £54.4m and admission to AIM next week. Last week Smart Metering Systems a provider of gas infrastructure connection services to the UK’s key gas suppliers, raised £10m of new investment at 60p per share (valuing the company at admission at £50m) and has seen its price rise to 75p per share. At the beginning of this week, Waterlogic, a leading manufacturer and distributor of point-of-use drinking water systems, announced it had raised £48.5m from institutional investors giving it a market capitalisation at admission of £112.5m.

The IPO momentum looks likely to continue through July but the professional advisers, having seen blips of activity before, remain cautious, even bearish. At a recent conference of nominated advisers, more than 40 per cent of those present thought that the number of companies on AIM could continue to…

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