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Thursday 20th of November 2008
March 13, 2006

London markets up on average volumes


by Elaine Frei

Bid rumors took the London equities markets higher on the day on Monday, as the FTSE 100 closed at 5,952.8, a gain of 0.8 percent and very near a five-year high. The FTSE 250 was also up on the day, by 1.7 percent to 9,591.8. Volume for the day was 3.5 billion shares traded.

In the telecommunications sector, Vodafone gained 4 percent to 129¾p. Depending on who was talking, the gain came either on an approach from a group of private equity companies or an informal bid from Verizon to purchase Vodafone’s 45 percent stake in Verizon wireless.

In metals, platinum miner Lonmin gained 8.6 percent to £24.54 as rumors continued that Russia’s largest gold miner, Polyus Gold, was thinking of offering for the company.

Airports operator BAA was up 2 percent to 830p on a report that Australian company Macquarie was interested in bidding for the company and was in talks with other companies on a possible joint offer.

In the mergers and acquisitions rumor gaining the most attention, the London Stock Exchange gained 30.6 percent to £11.49 on the possibility that Nasdaq’s offer for the LSE on Friday evening could be the start of a bidding war between Nasdaq and the NYSE group for the London exchange.

Elsewhere, pharmaceuticals group AstraZeneca was up 2.3 percent to £29.45 on positive test results for the company’s anti-cholestrol drug, Crestor. Sinclair Pharma was also up on the day, by 6.9 percent to 136p on the news that it had lowered its operating losses in 2005 and that it has raised the money to bid for French pharmaceutical company Groupe CS Dermatologie.

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Story link: London markets up on average volumes


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