Markets: Up

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The Independent Online
ROYAL Bank of Scotland shares rose 12 per cent last week, helped by takeover talk. One broker is recommending the shares as the cheapest in the sector in terms of its price/earnings ratio and it has the best yield. However, one of the suggested buyers, Halifax, the UK's biggest mortgage lender, was also buoyant on takeover speculation, rising nearly 7 per cent. On Friday it was suggested that Prudential, the UK's biggest insurer, is lining up a pounds 36bn merger with Halifax to create the UK's third- biggest financial services company.

Bank shares are returning to favour as markets stabilise, reviving talk of consolidation in the industry. Copyright: IOS & Bloomberg