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London Markets: Morrison Supermarkets trades above latest $9.5 billion bid as private-equity battle continues

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Wm Morrison Supermarkets traded above a new agreed offer, as the private-equity battle for the U.K. supermarket chain continues.

Morrisons
MRW,
+4.37%

shares rose 4.3% to 291.1 pence, after agreeing a 285 pence per share offer from Clayton, Dubilier & Rice that topped the 272 pence per share offer from SoftBank-backed Fortress.

The new £7 billion ($9.5 billion) offer is at a 60% premium to Morrisons’ value in mid-June, before the bidding frenzy began. The Fortress-led consortium said it is considering its options. “With the shares currently trading above the new and improved offer price, the market clearly thinks a better offer is a distinct possibility,” said Nicholas Hyett, equity analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown.

Also in the food retail space, Marks & Spencer
MKS,
+10.62%

rose 11% after hiking its full-year profit guidance. M&S said its adjusted profit before tax for the year will be above the upper end of previous guidance of £300 million to £350 million, and investors drew encouragement from the news that clothing and home business revenue surged 92% in the 19 weeks to Aug. 14, helped by online sales that are up 62% from pre-pandemic levels.

The FTSE 100
UKX,
-0.12%

meanwhile slipped 0.3% to 7,039.27, in what has been a tough week for the U.K. stock market index, as it has lost 2.4% over the last five sessions.

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