Autonomy Corporation up 71.59 percent on purchase by Hewlett-Packard

| August 19, 2011 | 0 Comments
Autonomy Corporation up 71.59 percent on purchase by Hewlett-Packard

Equities markets in Europe were lower again Friday after the Philadelphia Federal Reserve reported that its general economic index dropped significantly, from a reading of 3.2 in July to minus 30.7 this month, showing a steep contraction in the region, while recent figures also showed that Germany’s economy grew at a slower rate than forecast in the second quarter.

The FTSE 100 was down 1.01 percent to 5,040.76 in London, while the FTSE 250 dropped 1.03 percent to 9,759.06, with software companies gaining the most on both indexes while the biggest declines on both came from the energy sector.

Autonomy Corporation (LSE: AU) added 71.59 percent to lead gains on the 100 on the news that US-based Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ) will buy the British software company in an all cash deal as part of HP’s move to sell its personal computers business and concentrate on software and business services, while Aveva Group (LSE: AVV) added 9.91 percent as the best performer on the 250.

Essar Energy (LSE: ESSR), which has interests both in oil and gas exploration and in the generation and transmission of electricity, was the worst performer on the 100 and in the energy sector as it dropped 8.68 percent, while oil rig builder and refurbisher Lamprell (LSE: LAM) was down 7.17 percent to lead declines on the 250, while Petrofac Ltd (LSE: PFC) led the four gainers in the mostly lower sector as it added 3.09 percent.

Miners were mixed, with nickel miner Talvivaara Mining Company (LSE: TALV) dropping 5.02 percent as the worst performer in the sector, while diamond miner Gem Diamonds (LSE: GEMD) added 7.42 percent for the best performance in the sector, followed by a 7.07 percent gain for gold and silver miner Fresnillo, while fellow gold miner Randgold Resources (LSE: RRS) added 3.04 percent and also placed within the top five gainers on the 100.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was down 1.51 percent to 911.26 while the CAC-40 fell 2.93 percent to 3,016.99, the IBEX was 2.11 percent lower to 8,141.9 and the Dax dropped 2.19 percent to 5,480 and saw only two gainers.

Markets in Asia and the Pacific region were lower again amid continuing concerns that the global economy is slowing down and that banks around the world will be hurt by Europe’s debt crisis.

Among indications that the US economy, specifically, is slowing was data from the Philadelphia Federal Reserve showing a steep contraction in the region that includes Delaware and parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, as well as last week’s data showing first-time jobless claims up and a separate report that said existing home sales in the US in a surprising drop in July.

The Nikkei 225 was down 2.51 percent to 8,719.24 in Tokyo, while the Topix index was 2.04 percent lower to 751.69 and the Mothers market dropped 3.47 percent to 440.59 as commodities traders and oil explorers were lower on dropping oil prices and carmakers were down after Goldman Sachs downgraded Japanese manufacturers from “attractive” to “neutral”.

Toyota Motor (TYO: 7203) was down 1.4 percent while Honda Motor (TYO: 7267) fell 3.3 percent, Nissan Motors (TYO: 7201) was 4.4 percent lower and Isuzu Motor (TYO: 7202) dropped 6.2 percent.

The Shanghai Composite was down 0.98 percent to 2,534.36, India’s Sensex fell 1.99 percent to 16.141.7, the Hang Seng was 3.08 percent lower to 19,399.9 in Hong Kong, Singapore’s Straits Times Index was down 3.23 percent to 2,733.63, Australia’s markets retreated as the Sydney Ordinaries dropped 3.41 percent to 4,171.9 and the S&P/ASX200 fell 3.51 percent to 4,101.9, Taiwan’s Taiex was down 3.57 percent to 7,342.96, and the Kospi was 6.22 percent lower to 1,744.88 in South Korea.

New York equities markets were mixed in midday trade as the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.27 percent to 10,960.4 and the S&P 500 was down 0.03 percent to 1,140.3 but the Nasdaq Composite added 0.25 percent to 2,386.35.

Crude oil prices were higher as the US dollar weakened versus the euro, with West Texas Intermediate crude up 49 cents to $82.87 per barrel at around 12:30 p.m. in New York, while Brent crude had added $1.63 to $108.62 per barrel at last report from the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London, with Brent trading at a new record of $26.24 per barrel higher than WTI at one point in the session, with the gap due to supply disruptions in Libya, Nigeria and the North Sea at a time when US stockpiles are growing.

Gold prices were again in record territory, adding $28.10 to $1,850.10 per troy ounce in midday trade in New York after going as high as $1,881.40 per troy ounce earlier in the session as investors continue to seek safe investments as they worry about the US economy and Europe’s debt crisis, while silver had gained $1.56 to $42.28 per troy ounce by midday in New York.

Copper was up less than a cent to $3.99 per pound in New York trade and three-month contracts for the metal used in manufacturing and construction were $51 higher to $8,825 per tonne at the close on the London Metal Exchange as concerns about supply disruptions as miners in Chile’s Collahuasi mine threatened to go out on strike at the beginning of September.

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