Investors are relieved that Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has agreed a settlement over claims it mis-sold toxic mortgage-backed securities in the run up to the financial crisis in 2008. It will pay $1.1 billion which it says is ‘substantially covered by existing provisions’. The shares rise 1.2% to 176.62p.
Parcel delivery group UK Mail (UKM) has received a 440p takeover bid from Deutsche Post. The suitor believes UK Mail will help it win addition business from existing customers and benefit from significant synergies such as greater volumes flowing through Deutsche’s global operations.
Supermarkets giant Sainsbury’s (SBRY) rises 2.1p to 252.9p, despite reporting a 1.1% like-for-like sales fall for the second quarter. Another drop in underlying quarterly sales is not as bad as forecast and investors also focus on total volume growth. Food deflation continues to bite hard, though the newly acquired Argos business enjoyed a more positive quarter, with like-for-likes up 2.3%.
Low cost operator EasyHotel (EZH:AIM) has proposed to raise £38 million by placing new shares at 100p which is an 18.3% premium to yesterday’s mid-market price. It wants to use the cash to accelerate its expansion strategy.
Large warehouse investor Tritax Big Box REIT (BBOX) slips 4.3% to 137.4p after announcing a discounted fundraising to be used for acquisitions. It is seeking to raise £150 million via a share placing and open offer at 132p which is a 7.1% discount to last night’s closing price.
Closed life fund specialist Phoenix Group (PHNX) has confirmed plans to buy Abbey Life for £935 million in cash. It will fund the deal through a £735 million rights issue and new £250 million bank loan.
Several existing shareholders in Capital Drilling (CAPD) plan to sell an aggregate 18.5% stake in the business via a placing at 48p per share. The stock is in demand from institutional investors, no doubt in light of recent financial improvements and contract wins. It is running Shares Play of the Week, where we originally highlighted its attractions at 38p in July 2016.
Consumer brands powerhouse PZ Cussons (PZC) perks up 4.2% to 372.6p on the reassuring tenor of its AGM update, which includes news Asian results are benefiting from the weaker pound. The Imperial Leather soap-to-St Tropez self-tan supplier says 'the strength of the group's brand portfolio and new product pipeline is serving us well and, together with a continued focus on costs, leaves the group well placed to manage the challenging trading conditions that exist in most markets.'
Men's tailoring specialist Moss Bros (MOSB) gathers up 1.5p at 103p on half-year results to July showing impressive 4.9% like-for-like sales growth and a 30% surge in pre-tax profit to £3.7 million. There's also an upbeat current trading statement from well-regarded boss Brian Brick, who says like-for-likes were up 3.7% over the 8 weeks to 24 September.
Speciality pharmaceutical company Clinigen (CLIN:AIM) climbs 9% to 738.5p after reporting a 65% rise in pre-tax profit to £51.2 million for the year to June and issuing an upbeat outlook. CEO Peter George also announces he is standing down next month after six years in the hot seat; his parting gift is an 18% rise in the dividend to 4p a share.
Medical device specialist Inspiration Healthcare (IHC:AIM) falls 7% to 66p as investors take profits following a strong run, concerns over a weak pound proving a catalyst for many investors to sell. In a strong six months to July, Inspiration turned a loss into a £448,000 pre-tax profit.