The FTSE 100 index closed in green, marking its seventh consecutive day of gains. It closed 0.10% higher at 7,879.51 points on Monday. The FTSE 250 also gained 44 points and ended the day at 19,286.9.
Analysts feel the stocks are moving without direction ahead of the upcoming economic data this week. The UK will release its inflation data for the month of March on Wednesday.
Economists expect a decline in the inflation numbers and predict a rate of 9.8%, as compared to 10.4% in February.
Sanjay Raja, a senior economist at Deutsche Bank, said, “Annual inflation should fall below double digits for the first time in six months, to 9.7%.” He believes a relaxation in the prices for clothing, leisure, and health goods will cool down the overall numbers.
The British currency, the pound, was down 0.1% against the dollar on Monday, at $1.240, after touching a 10-month high point of $1.254 last week.
On the news front, the UK’s National Healthcare Service (NHS) has opposed the bid from U.S.-based Palantir Technologies (NYSE:PLTR). The data team at NHS has cautioned against using the company’s software to develop the operating system of the organization. The tech company is aiming to secure a contract with the NHS worth £480 million, which is due by the end of this year.
On the company side, takeover news led to some cheer among the stocks. With the latest rebound in the pound against the dollar, private equity companies are in a rush to make offers for their UK targets.
This was the latest addition to various other takeover and bid news floating around in the UK market over the last month. Apollo is already in the final stages of closing its offer for the UK’s John Wood Group PLC (GB:WG).
The shares of payment solutions company Network International Holdings PLC (GB:NETW) were up by almost 20% yesterday after it stated that it had received a proposal from a consortium of private equity players.
UK-based low-cost airline EasyJet PLC’s (GB:EZJ) shares jumped after the company raised its full-year profit forecast, driven by heavy bookings for the summer season.
Among the losers, gold mining company Bluebird Merchant Ventures Ltd. (GB:BMV) lost more than 25% on Monday after it announced its permit delay in South Korea.