FTSE 100 ends Monday in positive territory


The FTSE 100 made a positive start to the new week closing 55 points, 0.85%, higher in a day of tie-ups – both speculated and confirmed.

Notably, investor sentiment was lifted as Shire (LON:SHP) succumbed to AbbVie’s advances, with the British drug maker moving closer to agreeing a US$53bn offer.

In the latest twist to the big pharma takeover saga, new higher offer was given the nod by the company’s board.

The new offer of £24.44 cash and 0.896 of an AbbVie sharevalues Shire overall at £31bn in total and each share at £53.20. Shire shareholders would own approximately 25% of the combined new AbbVie.

It was the US’s firm’s fifth offer for Shire, which like many of its compatriots is seeking to use takeovers to switch domicile to low tax jurisdictions and boost their pipelines of drugs under development.

Shire shares were up 33p, 0.68%, on Monday trading at £49.03 and are up around 70% from £29.00 since mid-April.

There was plenty of froth in SABMiller’s (LON:SAB) shares as the beer-maker was also at the centre of a transatlantic takeover story, with ever growing speculation of a deal with Budweiser and Stella Artois owner Anheuser-Busch InBev

Sports Direct (LON:SPD) was, however, the top performer with a near 4% rise as it unveiled an antipodean tie-up with recently listed online discounter MySale and also revealed plans to open stores in Australia.

In other news from the Farnborough air show, easyJet (LON:EZJ) has selected CFM International as its engine supplier to provide 270 engines to power its firm order of 35 Airbus current generation A320 aircraft. Nevertheless, the budget airline was the biggest faller by midday.

In the small caps space, shares in Mentum Inc (LON:MEN) rose as much as 15% to 0.384p after the group revealed it had completed the £27mln acquisition of the Kyrgyz Republic mining assets of Robust Resources. Following the deal, the group will be renamed Tengri Resources.

Elsewhere, public relations group Huntsworth (LON:HNT) lost 15% after a profit warning.

Sector peer Mission Marketing (LON:TMMG) is also under the cosh, shedding 9%, even though management said first half trading had been in line with expectations.

Also down 7% is Tangiers Petroleum (LON:TPET) and, as with Mission, the reason for this is not immediately apparent from its anodyne operational update, which revealed that no major operational issues have occurred to date on the drilling of the TAO-1 exploration well located off the coast of Morocco.

Message board favourite Quindell (LON:QPP) rose 30% after a trading update and the appointment of another non-executive director.

Fuel cell developer AFC Energy (LON:AFC) is wanted after it signed a memorandum of understanding with South Korea’s firm Chang Shin Chemical. South Korea is one of the world’s biggest markets for alternative fuel systems and one that AFC has been targeting; the deal with Chang Shin represents the first significant breakthrough into the South Korean market to produce clean energy for grid supply.

AFC shares powered up 10% at one point on the news.

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