Reuters

Mike Coupe, CEO of Sainsbury’s, poses for a portrait at the company headquarters in London.

J Sainsbury on Tuesday continued its recovery from a 30-year low after data showed the supermarket chain was the best performer of the top four for the first time in nearly two years.

Sainsbury’s shares rose 2.5% as data for the 12 weeks to Aug. 11 released by research firm Kantar showed that Sainsbury’s performed better than rivals Tesco, Walmart-owned Asda and Morrisons for the first time since Nov. 2017.

Tesco shares fell 1.2% and Morrison fell 0.4%.

All four registered declining sales, ranging from a 0.6% drop at Sainsbury’s to a 2.7% decline for Morrisons.

Ocado

OCDO, +2.24%

  meanwhile rose 2% as the Kantar data showed the online supermarket posted a 12.6% sales gain.

More broadly, the FTSE 100

UKX, +0.40%

 rose 0.4% to 7218.39, a day after its best gain in nearly two weeks.

Markets clung to a tight range with traders focused on the U.S.-China trade war, the upcoming Jackson Hole Fed conference and the possibility of a payroll tax cut in the U.S.

Of other movers, AstraZeneca

AZN, +1.76%

AZN, +0.18%

 rose 1.7% after reporting that a late-stage trial of its Farxiga drug met its endpoint of significantly reduced the risk of cardiovascular death or worsening of heart failure.

Pub chains were mostly higher a day after Greene King

GNK, -0.56%

 agreed to a 4.6 billion pound buyout offer from the conglomerate controlled by billionaire Li Ka-shing. Mitchells & Butlers

MAB, +5.25%

  shares rose 4.2% and Marston’s

MARS, +2.17%

 rose 2.3%, while JD Wetherspoon

JDW, -1.64%

 fell 2.6%.

Greene King shares fell 0.6% after surging on Monday.

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2019-08-20