Big gains in the Far East and on the New York Stock Exchange helped drive growth in London early this week. By mid-morning on Tuesday the FTSE100 index was up 88.5 points at 6158.4 while the FTSE 250 was 22.4 better at 5203.1.
Engineering stocks put up a mixed performance though the sector as a whole was up 1.2% at 2319.4. Profit-taking after a recent strong run saw GKN shares drop 14.5p to 835.5p. Smiths Industries was also down, 4p lower on Tuesday at 986p. Delta, meanwhile, was 7.5p ahead at 118.5p.
British Aerospace’s efforts to reassure investors about the Al Yamamah arms-for-oil contract with Saudi Arabia appeared to be paying off. BAe shares were up 19p at 421p, a rise of over 4%, recouping some of the ground lost last week. Rolls-Royce was another gainer, putting on 9.5p at 259.5p, reflecting renewed confidence in the aerospace sector.
FKI was up 6.5p at 163.5p, despite last week’s statement to the stock exchange that outgoing chairman Jeff Whalley has no intention to bid for the company.
Ultra Electronics dropped 11.5p at 435p, following profit taking after better- than-expected annual profits and news that the submarine detection equipment company has a record £300m order book.
Weir Group was up 10.5p at 265p following renewed bid speculation, just two weeks after the company rebuffed a proposal from US pumps giant Flowserve.