A rebound from mining stocks combined with last night's abrupt end to Marmite-gate, the price spat between Unilever (ULVR) and Tesco (TSCO), helps the FTSE 100 move north of the 7,000 mark again on Friday. The blue chip benchmark ticks 41.3 points higher to 7,019 points with Tesco up 2.8% to 200.5p and Unilever 13.5p lower at £35.83.
In corporate news, asset manager Man Group (EMG) is a notable mover, the shares gaining 10.3% to 119.9p as it announces the $25m (£20m) acquisition of Aalto, a real estate equity and debt strategies specialist with $1.7bn of assets under management (AuM), and updates the market on third quarter trading.
AuM at Man increased $1.3bn despite poor performance in its trend-following AHL strategies. Also lending support is the announcement of a $100m share buyback programme from chief executive Luke Ellis.
Carclo (CAR) cheapens more than 2.5% to 125p as it acquires Precision Tool & Moulding for $5.5m and says trading in the six months to 30 September was solid. Yorkshire-based Carclo is raising £8m from institutional investors alongside the deal, significantly more than its cost, after a blow-out in the company's pension deficit earlier this year forced a cancellation of its dividend.
Emerging markets-focused asset manager Ashmore (ASHM) trades flat at 365p as third quarter AuM gained $2bn, or 4%, in what is typically a quiet quarter for the business. Improvement in net flows is being helped by improving performance in emerging markets financial assets year-to-date, says chief executive Mark Coombs.
Barbados-focused Elegant Hotels (EHG:AIM) loses 1.5p at 655p on a warning that bookings have been hit by the EU referendum. Approximately 70% of its customers come from the UK and the pound has weakened against the Bajan dollar by 17% since the Brexit vote, making holidays much more expensive. Analysts downgrade pre-tax profit forecasts by around a third for the next two years.
Miner Diamondcorp (DCP:AIM) has been forced to consult shareholders over a potential cash injection after talks broke down with a convertible equity provider. Its share price has fallen by 75% since the start of last month amid financial problems. It warns the business may not be able to keep trading if it cannot raise new money. The shares fall 3% to 1.6p.
Bombed-out Independent Resources (IRG:AIM) surges 32% higher to 0.11p as 10.7% shareholder Brandon Hill puts the micro cap oil explorer on a firmer financial footing by providing an unsecured loan of up to £340,000.
Franchise Brands (FRAN:AIM) drops 2.4% to 60.5p on news finance director Andrew Mallows has resigned, only weeks after the cleaning and repair franchising firm's August IPO, in order to 'return to his agricultural interests'.