StockMarketWire.com - The FTSE was down midday amid a flurry of interim results, led lower by financial and resources stocks with SABMiller's (SAB) rejected tilt at Heineken the story of the day. Scotland's heavily jawboned referendum continues to cast a pall over sentiment.

Near noon, the FTSE 100 was down 14.69 points, or 0.22%, to 6792.27p, and the FTSE 250 was down 59.16 points, or 0.38%, to 15,652.7. Wall St closed lower overnight on Friday, while Asian markets were mixed this morning.

Beverages behemoth SABMiller jumped 4.8% to 3569p as Heineken (HEIN:AS) rejected a takeover offer. SABMiller's move was possibly designed to protect it from being gobbled up by Anheuser-Busch InBev (ABI:BR).

Serco (SRP) led the blue-chip fallers, shedding 2.28% to 308.6p. Thereafter financial stocks acted as ballast. Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) was off 1.79% to 987p, followed by Man Group (EMG), down 1.47% to 120.9p, and Lloyds (LLOY), down 1.47% to 73.48p.

Several resources stocks were prominent to the downside. Tullow Oil (TLW) fell 0.96% to 699.75p, while Petrofac (PFC), Wood Group (WG.) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDSA) were in pursuit. Commercial property outfits and several supermarkets were also softer.

TUI Travel (TT.) was up 1.72% to 366.3p, after it and TUI AG confirmed they had reached agreement on the terms of a recommended all-share nil-premium merger.

BIGGER MOVERS

Reach4entertainment (R4E), up 23.08% to 6p, has booked an H1 pretax profit of £0.7m, from a loss of £0.1m a year earlier. Revenue was £41.5m, from £35.0m. It described the performance as in line with market expectations.

Webis Holdings (WEB) subsidiary WatchandWager.com has signed a further two-year agreement with the HKJC Horse Race Betting Ltd, a subsidiary of the Hong Kong Jockey Club to provide access to the HKJC pari-mutuel pools. Shares in Webis rose 14.29% to 3p.

Cancer fighting proton beam machine-maker Advanced Oncotherapy (AVO) jumped 14.52% to 4.18p after it was tipped in the weekend papers.

Distil (DIS) has warned its full year results will be significantly below current market expectations. Its shares collapsed 23.9% to 0.78p.

Kazakhstan-focused Frontier Mining (FML) posts a loss of $21.4m for the six months to the end of June - up from $4.6m a year ago. Its shares plunged 26.23% to 0.45p.

Testing kit specialist Immunodiagnostic Systems (IDH) dived 17.02% to 390p as it said revenues would miss expectations this year as demand fell causing an early problem for its five-year growth plan.

ECONOMIC NEWS

Euro zone's non-seasonally adjusted external trade surplus was 21.2bn euros in July, from 18.0bn euros a year earlier. Exports rose 3% year on year, while imports gained 1%.

LONDON HIGHLIGHTS

Plastics Capital (PLA), the niche plastics products group, announces an update on trading for the financial year to date and is pleased to confirm that the Company is trading broadly in line with market expectations. Its shares fell 12.12% to 101.5p.

Software group Micro Focus (MCRO) surged more than 13.32% to 954.75p as it confirmed a $2.4bn merger with US peer Attachmate. The cash generative UK group also said its 60p per share cash return remained unaffected by a deal that it saw as 'a rare opportunity to achieve a significant increase in the scale and breadth' of the business.

Greggs (GRG) booked a 10.87% gain to 594.25p as a strong Q3 trading statement triggered earnings upgrades. It reported like-for-like sales up 5.4% over the 11 weeks to 13 Sept. It said FY profits will be 'materially ahead' of management expectations.

Small cap IT and recruitment specialist Networkers International (NWKI) fell sharply as H1 results disappointed. Basic EPS fell 7% to 2.04p as its telecoms and banking teams struggle. The shares fell 12.8% to 54.5p.

Story provided by StockMarketWire.com