Market Report: Investors back Shire deal


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The Independent Online

Punters in the City were hoping the drugs do work as they piled into pharmaceutical giant Shire on rumours it was a takeover target.

Fresh from disappointment after US giant Pfizer abandoned its £63bn approach for AstraZeneca, investors were betting a deal for Shire might have more chance. Shire, known for its rare disease medicine and drugs for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), is a likely target of a foreign takeover because of its base in Ireland. AstraZeneca’s appeal to Pfizer was largely its UK’s tax base. Shire is based in the lower tax jurisdiction of Ireland. Shire jumped 3.5 per cent or 124p to 3,660p – top of the leaderboard.

The wider market was in a better mood following takeover talk and strong corporate financial results and the FTSE 100 advanced 12.13 points to 6,766.77.

BG Group, up 2.5p at 1,260p, sold its majority stake in a North Sea gas pipeline for more than £500m to Antin Infrastructure Partners.

Copper miner Kazakhmys said it had agreed a tax deal with the Kazakh government on some of its older assets which it plans to sell. It said it could save around $40m a year and it produced a 11.1p rise to 295.1p – top of the mid-cap table.

JD Sports fell 16p to 1,610p as the mid-tier retailer said it was boosted by the World Cup but kept its latest sales figures under wraps, as they could be “misleading”.

The FTSE-250 digital printing group Xaar fell 205.5p to 537p as it issued a profit warning and said sales volumes in its tile decoration business, the largest part of group, are not growing as fast as before. The reduction has meant 2014 sales are expected to be £130m for the full year – below analyst expectations.

AIM-listed oil and gas firm Serica Energy has bought an interest in the Erskine Field in the North Sea from BP and Serica jetted 0.25p to 11.12p.

Cyan has won its first order in India for its retrofit smart metering and warmed up 0.05p to 0.22p.

Drug discovery tiddler Summit Corporation has established US operations in Cambridge, Massachusetts and was 0.38p healthier at 7.75p.