City Watch

An early rally on Wall Street helped the FTSE-100 index turn a sea blue on Monday. Confidence that President Bill Clinton would overcome his sex scandal woes saw the markets strengthen in New York and London. The FTSE-100 was up 150 at 5268.6 by the close, and the gains fed through to the FTSE Mid-250. […]

An early rally on Wall Street helped the FTSE-100 index turn a sea blue on Monday.

Confidence that President Bill Clinton would overcome his sex scandal woes saw the markets strengthen in New York and London.

The FTSE-100 was up 150 at 5268.6 by the close, and the gains fed through to the FTSE Mid-250. It finished at 4734.9, up 37.5 on Monday.

Defence engineering groups Alvis and GKN were among the biggest gainers after confirming they were in talks about a merger of their tank and armoured car manufacturing operations. Alvis rose 25p to 197.5p and GKN went up 12.5p to 689.5p.

Vickers, also rumoured to be capable of mounting a bid for Alvis, came down 3p to 153.5p. Ahead of its results next week, Irish engineer Powerscreen rallied 1p to 86p, as more than 2.9 million shares changed hands. Analysts believe the gains reflect the perception that Powerscreen’s recent string of bad news announcements are at an end.

Turmoil in Asia clipped the wings of hi-tech engineer Fairey. The Surrey-based group’s profits slumped to £16.5m from £24m in the six months to July after stripping out an exceptional £43.7m from the sale of its aerospace businesses earlier this year. Its shares fell16p to close at 245p.

Glynwed climbed 8p to 188.5p, while Weir Group, which has announced the acquisition of French pumpmaker Schabaver for around £5m, lost 2.5p to 177.5p.