FTSE 100 watch: Footsie little changed as Scottish vote looms
iNVEZZ.com, Monday, September 15: Britain’s blue-chip index has been little changed today with investors staying cautious ahead of the Scottish independence referendum on Thursday. Weak data from China has also weighed on the Footsie, pressuring London-listed miners, while the latest round of sanctions against Russia has sent energy stocks into the red.
SABMiller Plc’s (LON:SAB) shares have jumped more than ten percent after the Wall Street Journal reported that Anheuser-Busch InBev (EBR:ABI) was talking to banks about financing a deal to acquire the FTSE 100 brewer.
**FTSE 100 little changed**
As of 12:38 BST, the UK benchmark index had lost 0.97 points to stand at 6,805.99. Market sentiment has been subdued ahead of Scotland’s referendum and following the release of downbeat data from China.
“Not much upside in the FTSE until after the Scottish referendum, so I would stay on the sidelines,” Lex van Dam, a hedge fund manager at Hampstead Capital, told Reuters.
The upcoming policy meeting of the Federal Reserve is also keeping investors on the sidelines with the US central bank expected to give clues about the timing of its first rate hike in more than eight years.
**Blue-chip winners and losers**
SABMiller’s share price has soared after the WSJ today quoted an unidentified person familiar with the matter as saying that Anheuser-Busch InBev was looking to finance what could be a £75 billion deal to acquire the London-listed company. The news emerged after Heineken (AMS:HEIA) said that it had rebuffed a takeover approach by SABMiller. ()
“So if SABMiller was looking for a poison pill to protect itself from AB InBev, it looks as though Heineken will not be suitable,” Mark Brumby at Langton Capital told the Financial Times. SABMiller’s share price currently stands 10.92 percent higher at 3,777.50p.
Shares in FTSE 100 peer Diageo (LON:DGE) have also been in demand. Reuters quoted Joe Rundle, head of trading at ETX Capital, as expecting further consolidation in the sector.
“I think the whole of the beverage sector will be a good bet,” Rundle added. Diageo’s share price is currently trading 2.40 percent higher at 1,856.00p.
TUI Travel’s share price has added 1.64 percent to 366.00p so far in today’s session.
At the other end of the spectrum have been energy stocks which have lost ground after the US imposed sanctions on several Russian energy companies, banning Western explorers from supporting their activities in exploration or production from deep water, Arctic offshore or shale projects. BP Plc (LON:BP), which owns just under 20 percent in Rosneft (LON:ROSN), has lost 1.04 percent to 465.25p.
**The FTSE 100 was 0.04 percent down at 6,804.21 points as of 12:48 BST on September 15, 2014.**
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