StockMarketWire.com - UK stocks were higher on Monday as companies continued to restart operations and open stores as lockdowns eased, offsetting tensions caused by ongoing rioting in the US.

At 11.35, the benchmark FTSE 100 index was up 62 points, or 1.02%, at 6,138.61.

LARGE AND MID CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Associated British Foods gained 7.3% to £19.55 on announcing that its discount clothing retailer Primark would re-open all its stores in England on 15 June.

Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca firmed 0.7% to £86.42 as its treatment for pancreatic cancer was recommended for marketing authorisation in the European Union, while a heart disease medication was approved in the US.

London West End property investor Shaftesbury edged 2.75p higher to 629.75p as Capital & Counties Properties agreed to buy a 26.3% stake in the company from Hong Kong billionaire Samuel Tak Lee for £436m.

Shaftesbury said legal action brought by Lee against the company related to a previous equity raising had been withdrawn.

Construction company Balfour Beatty cheapened 1.5% to 247p after cancelling its dividend, having previously placed it under review.

On a more positive note, Balfour Beatty said its order book at the end of April was worth £17.4bn, up more than 20% on the year-end position.

German property investor Sirius Real Estate fell 0.3% to 79.15p as it posted a 23% drop in annual profit, owing to lower gains on the value of its assets and higher finance expenses.

The company's underlying earnings, however, increased on the back of stronger rental income and it lifted its dividend for year to 3.57c, up from 3.36c on-year, though on a lower payout ratio in the second half.

Gambling software company Playtech added 3.8% to trade at 275p, having received regulatory approval to provide its casino product in the New Jersey market.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Fashion retailer Ted Baker sank 13.1% to 133.25p after it swung to a full-year loss, as sales were hit by heavy discounting blamed on weak consumer spending and a shift to online channels.

Ted Baker also wrote down the value of its inventory and launched a share issue to raise £105m, pitched a heavily-discounted 75p per share.

Flooring retailer Topps Tiles gained 3.2% to 40.6p on announcing that it had agreed the £18.1m sale and leaseback of its head office and central warehouse buildings at Grove Park in Enderby, Leicester to UK Warehouse Properties.

Auto dealer Marshall Motor was unchanged at 112.5p, even as it opened all 117 of its showrooms from Monday under revised Covid-19 operating procedures.

Mineral producer Strategic Minerals jumped 12.5% to 0.675p on announcing that it had been awarded around $21.9m in damages and costs by an arbitrator, plus interest.

The damages were won from the main customer of the company's Cobre magnetite operation in Nevada.


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