Sky, Randgold surge on deals while trade war weighs on FTSE 100
(For a live blog on European stocks, type LIVE/ in an Eikon
* FTSE 100 down 0.1 pct
* Sky jumps as Comcast wins auction
* Randgold rises on Barrick Gold deal
* Thomas Cook sinks on profit outlook cut
By Helen Reid
LONDON, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Resurgent fears of a protracted
and costly trade war dented the FTSE 100 on Monday, while M&A
stole the spotlight with Comcast finally clinching a takeover of
Sky, and Randgold Resources agreeing a tie-up with Barrick Gold.
Britain's top stock index fell 0.1 percent as miners
and consumer multinationals sold off on rising trade fears.
Antofagasta, Glencore, Anglo American
, Rio Tinto, and BHP Billiton fell
between 1.3 and 3.2 percent as metals prices reversed course on
the resurgence of trade worries.
London copper eased from a ten-week high as holidays in
China and Japan thinned trading.
Dealmaking drove some of the biggest moves. Europe's largest
pay-TV group Sky soared after Comcast's offer won an
auction for the company with a $40 billion bid.
Sky shares jumped 8.6 percent to 17.23 pounds, just below
Comcast's cash offer of 17.28 pounds a share.
"The Comcast offer represented a 9 percent premium to the
share price close on Friday and more than double the 765p share
price Sky had been trading at before the initial offer from Fox
in December 2016," wrote Liberum analysts.
They added that they don't expect significant changes for
Sky. "It is very unlikely Comcast will look to rebrand Sky, it
has pledged to keep Sky News and there is visibility on the
major football contracts."
Randgold Resources shares jumped 4 percent after the
miner agreed a deal with Canada's Barrick Gold to
create the world's biggest gold miner.
"The larger scale will provide greater ability to grow,
where the assets merit being developed," wrote Investec
"In this regard the company will have a greater
pipeline of large development opportunities, whereas
Randgold previously only had Massawa, an asset that many in the
market remained sceptical of," they added.
Among mid-caps, Thomas Cook Group lost nearly a
quarter of its market value, down 23.3 percent at the bottom of
the FTSE 250, after slashing its profit outlook, blaming a
heatwave in northern Europe for a slower late holiday season.
Shore Capital analysts lowered their recommendation from
"buy" to "hold".
"Assuming a more normal trading environment we would expect
some of this year's shortfall to be recovered, although the
winter is likely to be tougher," they wrote.
Thomas Cook peer TUI also fell 2.9 percent.
The FTSE 100, dominated by exporters which gain from a
weaker currency, has been in the thrall of the pound recently as
Brexit negotiations intensified. The currency's rise on Monday
kept the FTSE under pressure.
Sterling gained after UK Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab said
he was confident Britain would eventually clinch a Brexit deal
with the EU.
Limiting losses on the index, however, were oil majors BP
and Royal Dutch Shell. Crude prices gained on
tightening supply as U.S. sanctions restricted Iranian crude
(Reporting by Helen Reid; Editing by Mark Potter)
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