Strong growth reported by hedge fund operator Man Group and an improved bid for M&S have sent the FTSE up about 18 points to 4,388 so far today.
Man is up 81p to 1,437p after stating it has pulled in about $6bn from clients to its hedge funds so far this year, taking total funds under management towards the $40bn mark.
Marks & Spencer jumped 19.25p or more than 5% to 379.75p after confirmation from Philip Green’s camp that the improved offer for the company now stands at £9.1bn.
Sainsbury has gained 4.25p to 271.75p on continued speculation over a possible bid approach, and on rumours the company may try to block the £2.3m payment to ousted chairman Peter Davis.
Vodafone lit up telecoms stocks with a 2.25p gain to 120p on news of subscriber growth by its Japanese subsidiary.
MmO2 followed suit, gaining 2.25p to 94.25p.
ICI is down 3.25p to 220p after analysts at JPMorgan downgraded the company.
GlaxoSmithKline is down 11p to 1,084p.
AstraZenica is down 24p to 2,410p. Some investors are nervous at the strong pairing of Kerry and Edwards for the coming presidential elections in the US this autumn. Democrats in Congress have been seen to be more in favour of price caps for drugs, especially for chronic conditions hitting elderly voters.
Shares fell in New York overnight, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average index down 63.49 points to 10,219.34, while the S&P 500 index slipped 9.17 points to 1,116.21.
Asian markets were mixed. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index dropped 90.41 points to 11,384.96 earlier today, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is down 36.18 points to 12,320.26.IFAonline
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