Weir Group shares hit record high

Share this article
Have your say

FTSE 100 CLOSE 5935.13 -2.76

SHARES in Weir Group rose to a record high yesterday as the Glasgow engineering group extended the deadline it has given Australian mining equipment supplier Ludowici to accept its £243 million takeover offer.

Shares rose 58p or 2.7 per cent to 2,236p, a gain of almost 40 per cent in the past year.

Weir said its offer, which had originally been due to expire yesterday, will remain open for acceptance until six hours after a decision from the Australian takeover authorities into a rival bid from Danish competitor FLSmidth is made public.

And shares in Edinburgh-based oil explorer Bowleven made late gains as investors bought in ahead of the weekend, on hopes that an announcement relating to the takeover interest from Dubai-based Dragon Oil is imminent. The stock soared 15 per cent to 136p.

Lloyds was the biggest Footsie faller after it suffered a £3.5 billion loss and warned of further problems ahead.

The taxpayer-backed bank saw shares slip 2.3 per cent or about 0.8p to 35.73p, after boss Antonio Horta-Osorio said income related targets would be delayed as the bank comes under pressure from a weak economy and heavier regulation.

The FTSE 100 Index fell 2.76 points 5,935.13, with Royal Bank of Scotland, which on Thursday reported losses of £2bn, and HSBC also in the red, off 0.2p at 28.5p and 0.5p at 574.9p respectively.

But Barclays bucked the trend and added 6.7p at 247.7p.

The personal and home care sector took a pounding after Gillette and Head & Shoulders owner Procter & Gamble announced a £6.3bn cost-saving plan. Rival Unilever was another big faller, sliding 2 per cent or 40p to 2,050p, while Reckitt Benckiser fell 79p to 3,421p.

New York: The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index inched higher last night to close at the highest since before the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008, continuing a pattern of steady gains on signs of US economic recovery.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 2.27 points, or 0.02 per cent, at 12,982.42 but the broader S&P 500 was up 2.28 points, or 0.17 per cent, at 1,365.74 by the close. The Nasdaq Composite Index finished up 6.77 points, or 0.23 per cent, at 2,963.75.