FTSE 250 movers: Intu surges on Hammerson deal; Saga slides on profit warning
London's FTSE 250 was down 0.2% to 19,837.84 in afternoon trade on Wednesday, with deal news in focus.
Intu Properties surged after it agreed to be bought by FTSE 100 rival Hammerson for £3.4bn. For each share owned, Intu shareholders will receive 0.475 new Hammerson shares, which based on the Hammerson's overnight closing price of 534.5p values Intu shares at 253.9p apiece. This will mean Intu shareholders will own roughly 45% of the enlarged group, though the deal is not expected to close until the fourth quarter of 2018.
Stagecoach rallied after keeping its interim dividend steady as it reported higher profits and progress in all divisions, but found itself in the middle of a political dispute over the government's proposed new 'vision' for British railways.
Victrex was on the front foot after JPMorgan Cazenove hiked its price target on the stock to 2,250p from 2,150p, saying the full-year results highlight continued strong core volume growth momentum.
Marine engineering services group James Fisher advanced after buying Lancashire-based EDS, which provides a complete range of high voltage engineering services to the renewables industry, for up to £14.6m.
On the downside, Saga shares tanked after the over-50s specialist warned that profits in the current financial year would grow more slowly than expected and that 2018 profit would be down 5% on this year.
Recruiters Pagegroup and Hays were hit by downgrades from Deutsche Bank, which cut its stance on both stocks to 'sell' from 'hold'.
"The near-term outlook for Hays and Page’s non-UK business is strong, with high growth being seen in the data in France and improving data in Germany and Australia currently. However, share prices currently factor in improvements in conversion and the shares have never traded on higher P/Es on high EPS. We see significant de-rating risk for the companies despite the strong data as unemployment rates move below previous floors in many countries."
Intu Properties (INTU) 231.90p 16.53%
Stagecoach Group (SGC) 184.10p 4.37%
Victrex plc (VCT) 2,468.00p 3.22%
Just Eat (JE.) 806.00p 3.20%
Card Factory (CARD) 282.80p 3.02%
Provident Financial (PFG) 810.50p 2.53%
Dixons Carphone (DC.) 165.10p 2.29%
WH Smith (SMWH) 2,157.00p 2.13%
Greggs (GRG) 1,342.00p 2.05%
Fisher (James) & Sons (FSJ) 1,541.00p 1.92%
Saga (SAGA) 139.50p -23.06%
Brown (N.) Group (BWNG) 261.20p -5.40%
Pagegroup (PAGE) 439.90p -4.95%
Spire Healthcare Group (SPI) 233.50p -4.93%
Hays (HAS) 175.50p -3.78%
Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK) 945.00p -3.47%
Tullow Oil (TLW) 181.30p -3.36%
Wizz Air Holdings (WIZZ) 3,454.00p -2.84%
Sophos Group (SOPH) 522.00p -2.79%
Aggreko (AGK) 801.00p -2.73%