Lacklustre morning for FTSE

News of one of the biggest takeover deals of the year failed to lift the FTSE 100 Index far above its opening mark today.

News of one of the biggest takeover deals of the year failed to lift the FTSE 100 Index far above its opening mark today.

Brewing giant SABMiller saw its shares leap 8% or 69.5p to 955.5p after it agreed a deal worth $7.8bn (£4.48bn/€6.5bn) for Colombian rival Bavaria.

However, the Footsie moved just 0.9 points higher to 5215.1 by mid-morning as weakening financial stocks and a disappointing close on Wall Street overnight weighed on the mood. The top flight had risen as much as 16 points in early trading.

Many of the biggest names in UK banking were in the red with Royal Bank of Scotland fading 18p to 1723p, Lloyds TSB off 3.75p at 485.75p and HBOS 6.5p lower at 878p.

In contrast, some telecoms stocks made good progress after FTSE 250 stock Virgin Mobile said its move into the fixed contract market had been successful.

Virgin recovered early losses to stand 2% or 5p higher at 251p even though it also revealed that its number of new customers had nearly halved in the first quarter.

Larger rival O2 was the second highest Footsie climber, up 3p to 139.25p, while Cable & Wireless cheered 2.5p to 150p. However, Vodafone was unable to get any momentum going, weakening 0.25p to 141p, while BT weakened 1% or 3p to 226p.

Outside the top flight, shares in Matalan surged 6% or 12p to 203p as speculation resurfaced that Asda owner Wal-Mart was lining up a takeover bid.

And shares in specialist salvage firm SubSea Resources climbed more than 3% or a penny to 29.75p as the prospect of recovering gold and silver bullion from a 19th century wreck in the Atlantic sparked a fresh wave of investment.

But a pre-close update from chocolate maker Thorntons failed to move its stock. Shares were unchanged at 135p after it said annual results should hit market hopes.

More in this section

Lunchtime
News Wrap

A lunchtime summary of content highlights on the Irish Examiner website. Delivered at 1pm each day.

Sign up
Revoiced
Newsletter

Our Covid-free newsletter brings together some of the best bits from irishexaminer.com, as chosen by our editor, direct to your inbox every Monday.

Sign up