UK market update – Sanne Group agrees to takeover, Hays resumes dividend

imageStock Markets13 hours ago (Aug 26, 2021 08:40)

© Reuters.

By Samuel Indyk – At 08:38BST, the FTSE 100 is trading lower by 0.4% at 7,122. The midcap FTSE 250 is trading lower by 0.2% at 23,928.

In FX markets, GBP/USD is trading at 1.3754, EUR/GBP is trading at 0.8560. The US Dollar Index is +0.1%.

Today’s calendar highlights include US initial jobless claims and second estimate of US GDP. The Jackson Hole Symposium gets underway with speakers from the Federal Reserve expected to hold interviews with major financial TV stations throughout the day. The ECB will also publish the ‘account’ of its July meeting.


Sanne Group (LON:SNNS) – Apex Acquisition to buy Sanne for 920 pence per share in cash, valued at £1.51 billion. 

Polymetal (LON:POLYP) – H1 revenue increased 12% to $1.274 billion, driven by higher metals prices. Gold equivalent production was down 1% to 714 Koz, silver sales were down 19% to 8.0 Moz. Revises its FY 2021 capex guidance to $675-725 million (previously $560 million). On track to meet its 2021 production guidance.

AstraZeneca PLC (LON:AZN) – ALXN1840 FoCus Phase III trial in Wilson disease met primary endpoint demonstrating improvement in copper mobilisation from tissues. Intends to submit these data for review in the coming months. Separately, Forxiga has been approved in Japan for the treatment of chronic kidney disease in patients with and without type-2 diabetes.

British Land (LON:BLND) – Strategy is to more actively focus capital on two strategic themes, Campuses and Retail & Fulfilment. CEO Simon Carter said: “We are delighted with the momentum we are delivering across our business as the economy reopens.”

CRH (LON:CRH) – H1 sales 15% ahead of prior year. EBITDA 25% ahead amid continued margin expansion in all divisions. Increasing cash returns; interim dividend +4.5% & ongoing share buybacks. Expects H2 EBITDA to be ahead of record prior year.

Watches Of Switzerland (LON:WOSG) – Appointed Rank Group ‘s (LON:RNK) William “Bill” Floydd as Chief Financial Officer, succeeding Anders Romberg. 

Hays (LON:HAYS) – Resumes dividend payments as recovery from pandemic accelerated in H2. FY group fees down 8%, H1 fees down 24% but H2 up 13%. Proposing to resume core and special dividends, paying a total of 10.15 pence per share in November.

Beazley (LON:BEZG) – Initiated with a ‘Buy’ rating at Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS).

Hiscox (LON:HSX) – Initiated with a ‘Buy’ rating at Goldman Sachs.


Aviva (LON:AV), Auto Trader (LON:AUTOA), Diageo (LON:DGE), Land Securities (LON:LAND), Mondi (LON:MNDI) and St. James’s Place (LON:SJP) all go ex-dividend in the FTSE 100 today.

UK market update – Sanne Group agrees to takeover, Hays resumes dividend

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