The market has edged forward as takeover talk provided the main focus on an otherwise slow day for traders.
Banknote printer De La Rue surged 32% as its French suitor confirmed it was behind a near-£900 million approach for the troubled firm, while blue chip miner Rio Tinto was also in the spotlight after its £2.2 billion approach for Australian firm Riversdale mining.
The Footsie rose 24.96 points to 5770.3 amid the takeover excitement, despite early losses on the Dow Jones Industrial Average in America.
US stocks fell after Federal Reserve bank chairman Ben Bernanke hinted that a third round of quantitative easing may be needed to keep America’s recovery on track. He said in an interview on Sunday night that the US economy was still struggling to become “self-sustaining”.
Disappointing US payrolls data on Friday has added to concerns over the recovery.
The pound was up against a weakened euro at 1.18, as concerns in the eurozone over the debt crisis continued. Sterling was down against the dollar at 1.56.
In London, investor attention was set firmly on takeover developments in the Footsie and second tier.
FTSE 100 listed miner Rio Tinto has sparked a potential bid battle for Riversdale after it was flushed out as a suitor, with Rio’s shares lifting 40.5p to 4456p.
However, much of the focus was outside the blue chip index with De La Rue top of the FTSE 250 risers board – up 193.5p to 841p – after it confirmed an “opportunistic” approach.
French rival Oberthur Technologies later revealed it was De La Rue’s suitor.