Jaguar relocation threat | Stagecoach London deal
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5pm: London ends week on a high
The FTSE 100 closed the session 20.54 points higher at 7,585.46 – 2.76% up over the week – following data showing a key measure of US inflation eased.
Baillie Gifford owned Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust shrugged off recent losses to close as the best performer, up 6.6%, tracking a rise in the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index in New York. The trust has stakes in the likes of Tesla and Amazon.
Unsurprisingly, oil companies were among the worst performerss. BP and Shell lost 1.1% and 1.0% respectively. Smaller North Sea-focused producers EnQuest and Serica Energy closed down 10% and 6.8% respectively.
9.30am: FirstGroup rises on bid interest
FirstGroup shares were trading 8.6p (6.63%) higher at 138.5p after revealing yesterday that it has received unsolicited approaches, including one from private equity firm I Squared at 163.6p, valuing the company at £1.2bn.
Miners were on the front foot as copper prices rose, with Glencore, Antofagasta, Anglo American and Rio Tinto all trading up.
Greetings card firm Moonpig tumbled after various shareholders sold around £80m worth of shares retailer in a placing. The shares were sold at 250p each, which is a discount of around 8.2% to the closing share price on Thursday.
The FTSE 100 opened lower but at 9.30am it was trading 1.47 points higher at 7,566.39.
7am: Stagecoach London acquisition
Stagecoach subsidiary, Stagecoach Bus Holdings, is acquiring Kelsian Group’s east London bus operations and depot at Lea Interchange for £20m.
The company said the acquisition is a good strategic fit with Stagecoach’s existing operations in east and south-east London. Lea Interchange depot is well located close to Stratford, the busiest station in the UK. It operates eleven contracts on behalf of TfL using a fleet of around 150 buses, with an annual turnover of around £38m.
Shares in Stagecoach will be cancelled on 27 June after its acquisition by Germany-based Inframobility UK Bidco, a company indirectly wholly-owned by Pan-European Infrastructure III, an infrastructure fund managed by DWS Infrastructure.
Jaguar relocation threat
Jaguar Land Rover’s owner Tata Motors has threatened to move its electric vehicle (EV) production to Slovakia following a row with UK ministers.
The car maker has been locked in talks with the government over funding for its planned gigafactory, which could be built near Bristol or Redcar.
Government sources told the Telegraph that Tata Motors was threatening to shift production “as way to extract more money from the government.”
Spread betters are forecasting the FTSE 100 to open lower, but could still close its strongest week of gains since March, despite the new levy on big energy firms announced by the Chancellor.
On Wall Street, markets were driven higher by a slew of upbeat figures from key retailers. The Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Nasdaq climbed 1.63%, 1.99% and 2.82% respectively. This means that on average, the US is also heading for the best five-day performance since March if sentiment holds up heading into the final session of the week.
Sterling was quoted at $1.2645 early Friday in London, up from $1.2580 at the London equities close on Thursday.
Brent oil was trading at $117.31 a barrel, up from $117.05.