FTSE 100 watch: Footsie rises as investors digest corporate news

Smurfit Kappa lends support to index after unsolicited bid

FTSE 100 watch: Footsie rises as investors digest corporate news

The UK benchmark index has advanced in London in today’s session, with investors digesting corporate releases. A rise in Smurfit Kappa (LON:SKG) is lending support to the FTSE 100, with the packaging group’s shares rallying after it disclosed that it had received an unsolicited takeover bid.

Smurfit Kappa leads Footsie higher

As of 12:15 GMT, the FTSE 100 had added 59.72 points to stand 0.84 percent higher at 7,175.70. In the absence of major macroeconomic releases, investors have focused on corporate news, with Smurfit Kappa lending support to the index, having gained 22.58 percent to 3,116.00p so far, after rejecting an unsolicited takeover approach by Memphis-based International Paper Company. The packaging producer, however, did not disclose the value of the offer.

“We believe an offer above 33 euros per share would be realistic” to start discussions between both groups, Reuters quoted Jefferies as saying in a note where it saw a ‘positive M&A read’ to packaging peers DS Smith and Mondi.

Intertek (LON:ITRK) has been another prominent Footsie riser after reporting a 12.8-percent surge in net profit after tax to £306 million and hiking its payout to shareholders by 14.3 percent. Intertek’s share price is 7.19 percent better off at 5,218.00p.

Just Eat and Ashtead retreat

At the other end of the spectrum has been Just Eat (LON:JE), whose shares have given up 8.99 percent to 775.20p after the company reported that it had made a pre-tax loss last year.

Shares in Ashtead (LON:AHT) have also been sold off after the company disclosed that its finance chief would step down. Ashtead’s share price is 6.23 percent worse off at 1,902.50p.

The FTSE 100 was 0.81 percent up at 7,173.38 points as of 12:35 GMT on Tuesday, 06 March 2018.

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