Tuesday, 8th May: After a long weekend off, the FTSE 100 climbed almost 0.4% higher by 08:30 GMT, supported by gains in Shire after the £45.3 billion deal with Takeda was announced. Shire shares were up almost 6.0% during the morning as the pharmaceutical giant firmly secured their spot at the top of the blue-chip index and remained there for the entirety of the day.
Large gains by players in the FTSE 250 such as; Virgin Money Holdings, Grafton Group, RHI Magnesita and Hikma Pharmaceuticals kept the index afloat, outweighing the large drop from FirstGroup who were down more than 13% in the afternoon following the news Apollo had withdrew their offer for the group.
Tuesdays hot topic however remained Trump’s decision on the Iran nuclear deal, which he moved forward by four days, making the announcement due on Tuesday at 18:00 GMT. The buzz around his decision managed to pull oil down from its highs which were last reached in November 2014. By mid-day, Brent crude was down to $75.64 a barrel, down 56 cents from Mondays’ peak.
As the world awaits Trump’s decision, it was a quiet day otherwise, and apart from Shire’s big deal there wasn’t much else to report regarding the blue-chip index. As a result, they had a somewhat bland day and ended 0.02% lower at 7565. The FTSE 250 had a more exciting day however and closed 0.85% higher as Virgin Money Holdings and RHI Magnesita continued to make gains throughout the day and closed 9.89% and 9.67% higher respectively.