Market Report: GKN finds new gear as City praises deals

The car and aerospace components company GKN hit a 14-year high after analysts at UBS praised its recent acquisitions as "transformative". Scribblers at the bank reckon the recent purchases of the Getrag and Volvo Aero businesses have "strengthened GKN's strategic position in both of its key markets – aerospace and autos".

The shares hovered around 314p on the back of the news, just shy of GKN's intraday high of 316.7p, a level last seen in mid-1999. GKN closed up 15.1p at 313.7p.

The pest control company Rentokil also rose on reports of a possible offer for its office maintenance business. The US private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice is reportedly considering buying the division, with a price tag of over £400m, and also purchasing Balfour Beatty's rival operation with the aim of merging the two. Mike Murphy at Numis advised investors to add Rentokil, saying a sale of the business would leave the company more focused and with "excellent long-term growth potential". Rentokil put on an extra 2.3p to 90.75p.

Fund managers were all the rage on the benchmark index. Société Générale was bullish on F&C Asset Management, raising it from a "hold" to a "buy" and saying that the market has failed to recognise the progress made by F&C with its restructuring plan. The activist investor Edward Bramson has been quietly building a stake in the company over the past two weeks through his investment vehicle Sherborne, but his intentions remain unclear. F&C added 2.8p to 98.1p.

Aberdeen Asset Management also banked 7.4p to 463.9p, while Schroders put on 27p to 2,364p, Man Group added 2.9p to 116.5p and Jupiter took on 8.3p to 327.5p.

Vodafone made gains late in the day on the news that the Indian government had taken steps towards agreement with the mobile giant over a long-running tax issue. The government has long claimed it is owed £1.31bn in tax for asset acquisitions made in India in 2007, despite the Supreme Court ruling in Vodafone's favour last year. The company picked up 3.45p to 192.05p.

The FTSE 100 bounced back from Monday's one-month low, after weak US manufacturing data led investors to assume that the Federal Reserve will keep up its stimulus programme. The index clicked up 33.46 points to 6,558.58.

The City was pleasantly surprised by a tie-up between two fashion powerhouses. The budget retailer Primark announced it will sell its womenswear online through the fashion site Asos in a "very limited trial". The move comes just two months after Primark, owned by Associated British Foods (ABF), ruled out a move online.

Analysts at IG said: "These two very different clothes retailers could find this tie-up to be very rewarding. This will offer Primark [the] ability to assess the online retail market without the expense of starting up a website and creating a distribution network, [while] Asos will gain increased exposure."

ABF added 30p to 1,867p, while Asos ticked up 49p to 4012p.

What a difference a day makes. After ending Monday among the 10 worst-performing stocks, investors yesterday saw value in Tesco, boosted by strong retail sales figures. The supermarket added 6p to 364.45p.

EasyJet shares plunged on Monday amid fears that the civil unrest gripping Turkey could disrupt operations. But yesterday the budget carrier soared to the top of the index as it assured investors that Turkey isn't a significant part of its network, picking up an extra 42p to 1,263p.

Details emerged of a sell-off by Glencore Xstrata of copper mines in Peru, worth about $5bn (£3bn). The company is offloading the mines as part of an agreement with China's anti-monopoly watchdog, which vetted the commodities giant's mega-merger earlier this year. Now it looks as if the frontrunners in the bid for the assets are two companies with links to the Chinese government. Glencore Xstrata drilled down 0.15p to 326.4p.

Roll-Royce shares drove up 3p to 1,190p after the engine maker announced a contract worth £3m with the Italian cruise ship builder Fincantieri.

On Aim, Nighthawk Energy registered an uptick after discovering an oil column at one of its Colorado drilling sites. Nighthawk jumped 0.27p to 5.675p.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll as Agnes Brown in the 2014 Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas special
tvCould Mrs Brown's Boys have taken lead for second year?
Arts and Entertainment
Jack O'Connell stars as Louis Zamperini in Angelina Jolie's Unbroken
film review... even if Jack O'Connell is excellent
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
Life and Style
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Arts and Entertainment
tvChristmas special reviewed
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Selby Jennings: Oil Operations

Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...

The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operations Manager

£43500 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operatio...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - LONDON

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000 + Car + Pension: SThree: SThree are a ...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35K: SThree: We consistently strive to be the...

Day In a Page

A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all