Banks were making a strong rise after UBS lifted its rating for the global banking sector from 'underweight' to 'overweight', saying that the operating environment is beginning to improve. In a research report titled 'Post-crisis banking', UBS said that the tone of its Global FID conference earlier this week was "neutral to slightly positive" and banks are starting to see "improving bottom-up trends". RBS led the risers, with Lloyds close behind. [Fri 14:42]
Stock of Bovis Homes, along with its peers, saw an extraordinary surge in its share price yesterday, up 12p to 765p, almost twice where it was last June. The stock is approaching a 30% premium to their estimated net asset value; this seems to be building in an awful lot of the future growth expected by analysts. "Not a bad time to take some profits," writes The Times's Tempus. [Fri 06:55]
Severn Trent topped the leaderboard after it confirmed press speculation that it has received a bid approach from a consortium of investors, which is rumoured to value the UK utility company around 5.3bn pounds. In a statement released this morning, Severn Trent said it had received an approach with a view to making a proposal from Canadian infrastructure investor Borealis, the Kuwait Investment Office and Universities Superannuation Scheme. [Tue 14:57]
Strong gains in the utilities sector after a takeover approach for Severn Trent and some well-received results from Babcock International weren't enough to lift markets into positive territory by Tuesday lunchtime, as the FTSE 100 snapped an eight-day winning streak. [Tue 11:50]
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