Market Report: Hopes the collapse of Pfizer's takeover bid would leave AstraZeneca open to a counter-offer are wide of the mark

Speculators hoping AstraZeneca might still be in play after Pfizer's abortive bid might want to reconsider.

The pharmaceutical giant revealed that boss Pascal Soriot bought £2m worth of shares in Astra on Monday, implying no takeover talks are happening.

Many had hoped that the collapse of Pfizer's takeover bid would leave Astra open to a counter-offer or provoke a defensive merger to prevent a second approach. No such luck it seems. Gamblers can still hold out hope that Pfizer might return after its six-month cooling-off period ends. Astra added 29p to 4369.5p.

Punters were talking up Vodafone, 1.05p better at 196.05p, with a rumour circulating that it could be interested in French telecoms major Orange. The rationale discussed is that it would give Voda access to EE, a joint venture between Orange and Deutsche Telekom, and take some cash off Voda's balance sheet. A merger between Deustche and Orange is also seen as a possibility.

Chinese manufacturers supported the FTSE 100, as growth in the sector spurred miners higher. Anglo American was 57p better at 1487p, Rio Tinto added 94p to 3202.5p and BHP Billiton climbed 55p to 1944.5p.

The bluechip index closed 58.98 points higher at 6802.92, breaking the 6800 mark again after a lull.

AO World rebounded 12.5p to 270p on the mid-cap index, as the online white goods retailer recovered from a painful sell note issued by Shore Capital earlier in the week.

Surveyor and construction management specialist Sweett Group is facing investigation in both the UK and US into corruption in the Middle East, but that hasn't dampened performance. The company revealed a 59 per cent jump in pre-tax profit to £2.8m in the year to March, helping Sweett climb 1.5p to 39.5p.

AIM-listed Cyan Holdings leapt 0.075p to 0.37p after the energy monitoring technology maker signed its second smart meter deal in India in two weeks.

Music streaming and online radio specialist 7Digital collapsed 2.75p to 15.5p on news that BlackBerry is closing its mobile download store. The company said the move would not affect forecasts.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive / Foreign Exchange Dealer - OTE £40,000+

£16000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Foreign Exchange Dealer is re...

SThree: Experienced Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £40000 per annum + OTE + Incentives + Benefits: SThree: Established f...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE 40/45k + INCENTIVES + BENEFITS: SThree: The su...

Recruitment Genius: Collections Agent

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company was established in...

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones