Rumours of a potential takeover bid for Friends Provident has lifted the FTSE 100 index this morning.
The FTSE 100 index was up almost 16 points or 0.4% to 4418 within the first hour of trading, led by Friends Provident and British Airways.
The Sunday Express yesterday reported – without citing sources – the £3.5bn listed life insurer could receive takeover bids from larger firms, which has lifted its own share price 5p or 3.5% to 147.25p.
British Airways also gained 3.1% to 297p this morning after reporting its fiscal third-quarter profit rose more than sixfold to £83m.
Leeds United football club also rose 0.5% or 19% to 3.13p this morning after the Daily Telegraph reported the club may receive a £60m bid from Ugandan property developer Michael Ezra.
EMI Group, the record company, also added 4.75p or 2% to 242.75p after a ratings upgrade.
Most of the key Asian indices closed up today, except for the Nikkei 225 index, thanks largely to US suggestions from the Fed Reserve Bank the 45-low base rate will not change at least until September.
As a result, several of the largest consumer names made gains on Monday, however, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index closed down 58 points or 0.6% to 10,402.6 after a report suggested mobile phone operators – including NTT DoCoMo Inc – saw lower subscriber numbers in January.
And in the US on Friday, all three indices made gains of at least 1% while the Nasdaq rose again to add an extra 2%.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average index closed up 97.48 points or 0.93% to 10,593 and the S&P 500 index gained 14 points or 1.26% to 1,142.7 while the Nasdaq Composite index rose 44.45 points or 2.2% to 2,064.IFAonline
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