The FTSE 100 ended the day down after strong performance last week, down 28.9 points, or 0.43%, to 6703.5.
Shares in ICI jumped in early trading, as a bidding war looked set to take place after the rejection of Akzo Nobel’s £7.2bn offer, up 85.5, or 15.57%, to 634.5p.
More modest gains were made by SABMiller, up 17 points, or 1.35%, to £12.78, followed by Reuters Group, up by seven points, or 1.35%, to 640p. Rolls-Royce experienced another good day with shares gaining 5.25 points, or 0.96%, to 552p, and BHP Billiton ended the day up by 11 points, or 0.81%, putting shares at £13.69.
Big gains by ICI were offset by losses for Persimmon, down 3.37% to £13.33, and Barratt Development, down 2.7% to £10.46. Both companies saw shares fall amid renewed fears from homeowners that interest rates will rise. These were closely followed by Intercontinental Hotels, down 2.64% to £13.26.
After recent strong performance, the Dow Jones slipped in early trading, down 2.35, down 0.02%, at 13637.13.
Alcoa led the pack on fresh talk of a takeover approach, up 2.79% to 42.76. This was followed by more modest gains for Caterpillar, up 0.88% to 81.82, Coca-Cola climbed 0.62% to 51.9, Disney saw shares rise 0.55% to 34.59 and Home Depot gained 0.45% to 38.12.
American Express performed poorly in morning trading, down 0.62, or 0.97%, to 63.15. This was closely followed by Honeywell International, up 0.87% to 58.36, and Procter & Gamble, down 0.86% to 62.03.
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Would create €1.4bn giant
Will work alongside de Bunsen and Webster
Briggs headed up insurance business