- Most leading FTSE indices tiptoed higher in muted trade before midday, with Kentz benefitting as investors priced a bid premium into its shares.

M+W Group confirmed it submitted an indicative offer for Kentz (KENZ), up 22.35% to 582.25p, in early July, which was rejected by the Kentz board. M+W Group says it is still considering its options which may or may not result in a cash offer being made for Kentz.

Separately, AMEC (AMEC), down 0.32% to 1080.5p, confirmed it made an approach to the board of Kentz outlining a possible conditional cash offer for the company's entire issued and to be issued share capital.

1PM was at 43p following a capital reorganisation. Separately, on Friday, 1PM said the first two months of its 2013/14 financial year had been very positive. CEO Maria Hampton said new business written since the year-end has contributed to an increase in 1pm's lease portfolio of more than 5%, which was £15.6 million at July 31.

Approaching midday, the FTSE All Share was up 0.05% to 3457.72, while the FSTE 100 was down a muted 0.01% to 6499.31. The FTSE 250 was up 0.39% to 14891.9, and the FTSE SmallCap gained 0.12% to 4107.85.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 was led lower by a string of miners. Kazakhmys was down 2.75% to 307.8p, Anglo American was down 2.55% to 1508p, and Fresnillo was down 1.45% to 1155p. These were followed by other sector heavyweights.

Lonmin was down 1.23% to 348.65p, Rio Tinto was down 0.99% to 3073.75p, Vedanta was down 0.97% to 1223p, BHP Billiton was down 0.89% to 1969.75, Randgold Resources was down 0.87% to 5105p, and Eurasian Natural Resources was down 0.86% to 230.5p.

The FTSE 250 was led up by CPP Group, up 18.46% to 19.25p, Orogen Gold, up 8.82% to 0.37p, and Halfords, up 4.26% to 372.2p. Rightmove gained 4.2% to 2359p.

Punch Taverns,, Premier Foods, Thomas Cook, Spectris, and African Barrick Gold were up between 2.74% and 3.85%. US & ASIA

In the US overnight, an overall ho-hum session saw the Dow down 31 points to 15,081, while the Nasdaq fell 3 points to 3,603. The S&P500 followed suit, shedding 5 points to 1,656.

In Asia, the Nikkei closed up 108 points to 13,758, while the Hang Seng ended down 54 points at 22,464.

WTI crude oil was around the $106.9 level for a barrel, while Brent crude was around $110.5.

Gold was trading around $1,374.8.


Specialist information publisher Electric Word (ELE), up 0.27% to 1.88p, posts adjusted pre-tax losses of £354,000 for the six months to the end of June compared with a profit of £422,000 last time.

Quindell Portfolio's (QPP) first-half pretax profit surged ahead to £43.4 million, from £12.2 million. Revenue totalled £163.3 million, from £45.6 million. It also raised the prospect of a maiden dividend at the time of its full-year results. It gained 3.77% to 12.63p.

First half revenues at emerging and developing markets-focused drilling company Capital Drilling (CAPD) fell by 8% to $72.7m in the six months to the end of June. Its shares followed suit, down 2.63% to 18.5p.

Fastnet Oil & Gas (FAST) posts a net loss of £1.4m for the year to the end of March - its first set of annual results as a public company. The loss is inclusive of the acquisition costs of Pathfinder Hydrocarbon Ventures and reverse takeover of Sterling Green Group. Its shares sagged 3.18% to 18.88.

Westminster Group (WSG), up 7.58% to 53.25p, said it has been invited to start final contract negotiations by end-August in relation to the provision of complete security for an international airport in East Africa.

Inspired Energy (INSE), up 1.79% to 7.38p, declares a maiden interim dividend of 0.05p per share after revenues for the six months to the end of June rose by 65% to £3.5m.

Kolar Gold (KGLD) is taking a 30% stake in Geomysore Services India Private Limited to develop a number of advanced stage quality gold projects in India. Its shares gained 9.5% to 4.38%.

fastjet (FJET) has raised £1,612,000 via a draw down under its equity financing facility with Darwin Strategic Limited, a majority owned subsidiary of Henderson Global Investors Volantis Capital. Its shares were up 0.52% to 0.96p.

Alba Mineral Resources (ALBA), down 15.56% to 0.19p, posts pre-tax losses of £33,994 for the six months to the end of May - down from £100,223 last time.

Arcontech (ARC), down 10.34% to 0.13p, posts pre-tax losses of £501,744 for the year to the end of June - down from £586,391 last time.

Trading profits at Kingspan (KGP), a global leader in high performance insulation and building envelope solutions, rose by 6% to €55.9m in the six months to the end of June. Its shares added 4.18% to 11.44p.

Magnolia Petroleum (MAGP), AIM-quoted US onshore focused oil and gas exploration and production company, has increased its working interest in three wells in the Woodford and the Mississippi Lime Formations in Oklahoma. Its shares were up 5.53% to 2.48p.

JKX Oil & Gas (JKX), up 2.21% to 69.5p, is encouraged by results from frac results in Ukraine but admits the last four stages have proved to be more challenging.

Solo Oil (SOLO), up 1.64% to 0.31p, said while progress towards the eventual commercialisation of the Ruvuma PSA has been slightly slower than previously envisaged, it remains enthusiastic about the eventual outcome.

Aminex (AEX), up 4% to 2.08p,has issued an update on its its current activity in Tanzania. On the Ruvuma production sharing agreement, the company says that, as announced on 8 July, an appraisal licence was issued by the Tanzanian Government for the Ntorya gas discovery and has been formally gazetted.

Amlin (AML) posts pre-tax profits of £161.4m for the six months to the end of June - down from £184.4m last time. Its shares shed 0.58% to 393.55p.

San Leon Energy (SLE) has signed a MoU granting it the exclusive rights to a 36 km2 Block in the Timahdit Oil Shale Deposit for two years to evaluate the commercial viability of a surface retorting project on the prolific Timahdit oil shale deposits. Its shares gained 1.99% to 5.64p.

Safeland (SAF) booked a full-year pretax profit of £1.02 million, from £31,000. Revenue was £8.6 million, from £15.1 million. Its shares added 8.2% to 16.5p.

Shipping services group Clarksons (CKN), down 1.48% to 1896.5p, is increasing its interim dividend to 19p per share - up from 18p last time - after a robust performance in challenging markets.

Minera IRL (MIRL), the Latin American gold mining company, has entered into a definitive agreement with Compania Inversora en Minas (CIMINAS) for 100% of the financing required to develop the Don Nicolas Gold Project in Santa Cruz Province, Argentina. Its shares rose a heady 10.85% to 15.38p.

Bovis Homes' (BVS) pre-tax profits rose by 19% to £18.6m in the six months to the end of June. Housing revenues were up 17% at £183.2m and housing operating profits rose byu 50% to £20.4m. Bovis’ shares rose 0.93% to 785.75p.

Maple Energy (MPLE) narrowed its first-half pretax loss to $7.4 million, from a loss of $33.2 million. Revenue was $71.6 million, from $50.8 million. Maple’s shares gained 6.45% to 49.5p.

Energy Technique's (ETQ) first quarter trading was above management forecasts with pre-tax profits up 207% on a year ago. Its shares added 14.38% to 87.5p.

Bullabulling Gold (BGL) has confirmed that drilling has re-commenced at its wholly-owned Bullabulling gold Project in Western Australia. Its shares gained 7.14% to 3.75p. Story provided by