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ABInbev seals deal; TalkTalk hit by attack

BudweiserWed: Drinks giant Anheuser Busch-InBev made a formal offer to buy London-listed rival SABMiller for £44 a share in cash. The deal is expected to complete in the second half of next year.

Shares in information services company Experian rallied for the second day in a row, after Citigroup lifted its price target on the stock by 9% to 1,340p to reflect higher earnings and the sector’s re-rating. Morgan Stanley lent a helping hand, hiking its target on the shares to 1,400p from 1,350p.\

TalkTalk estimated the one-off financial impact of the cyber attack that occurred in October at between £30m and £35m. The telecommunications company said earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation fell to £90m from £110m, missing expectations of around £98m. However, it raised its interim dividend 15% from last year to 5.29p – a move that surprised analysts and investors who had been expecting a cut.

An unexpected drop in UK unemployment (it rose in Scotland) to  5.3% to its lowest since 2008 gave the pound a boost against the dollar.

Front month Brent crude futures on the other hand dropped 2.71% to $46.19 per barrel after the latest weekly inventory data from the American Petroleum Institute revealed a 6.3 barrel build in US oil stocks last week. That weighed on the shares of oil majors BP and Royal Dutch Shell.

The FTSE100  ended the day higher by 21.92 points or 0.35% at 6.297.20.


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