Engineering shares benefited from stock market enthusiasm earlier this week, as merger speculation and demand for banking shares pushed up the FTSE 100 index.
The leading index was up 59.1 at 6083.1 by mid-morning on Tuesday with the FTSE mid-250 index showing more modest gains, up 21.2 at 5198.4.
Gainers included British Aerospace, up 4p to 439.5p on news that Greece had ordered 80 Eurofighters from a consortium in which it holds a majority stake. Rolls-Royce, also set to win business from the contract, rose 6.25p to 258p.
Fasteners maker Haden MacLellan’s shares recovered ground on Tuesday after a 23% fall following Monday’s profit warning. It blamed cost overruns on contracts for an expected second half loss. The shares were up 4p to 43.5p at midday on Tuesday, having tumbled from 51.5p on Monday.
British Steel dropped 3.75p to 125.25p after analyst downgrades in the wake of news of more ore price cuts and a warning that the outlook for the European steel industry remains poor. Engineering group Mayflower, however, was one of the biggest risers in the FTSE 350, climbing 6.5p, or 4.6%, to 146.5p.
FKI, meanwhile, surrendered some of its recent gains after issuing a statement on Monday denying bid speculation about its outgoing chairman Jeff Whalley. This prompted an 8p fall to 150.5p on Monday, and a smaller 0.5p drop on Tuesday morning.