MARKET RAP: Plastic refineries from RPC are coming closer after US hedge funds have entered

<pre><pre>MARKET RAP: Plastic refineries from RPC are coming closer after US hedge funds have entered

Plastics company RPC Group set investors on fire because it confirmed that it was in talks with two US private equity companies.

The FTSE 250 company, one of Europe's largest manufacturers of plastic packaging, rose by 18 percent or 123p to 806.6p after it admitted that it was in & # 39; preliminary discussions & # 39; used to be.

Although RPC warned that none of the suitors would be allowed to make a bid, investors' expectations regarding a bidding war were ignited as they pushed up the market value of the company by £ 499.7 million.

Speculation about the future price of RPC has grown in recent weeks, because the share price has fallen due to the decreasing popularity of plastic.

Even with yesterday's gains, the shares have dropped 6.2 percent over the year so far.

And chairman Jamie Pike noted earlier this summer that some investors were not satisfied with the level of debt that RPC wanted to take over, limiting the ability to grow.

Harry Philips, an analyst at Peel Hunt, said that having two potential bidders sniffing around RPC is a good starting point. is. He added that Australian Amcor, the world's largest packaging company, bought US rival Bemis last month for a hefty valuation, demonstrating RPC at current market value & # 39; is a much mis-priced stock & # 39 ;.

On the FTSE 100, the Anglo-Dutch media and analysis company Relx announced that it had completed its switch to the UK. In contrast to Unilever, which has decided to combine its British and Dutch weapons in Rotterdam and asks the shareholders to approve the move, Relx has brought his company to the United Kingdom. This caused the market value in London to almost double to £ 33 million as shares in the Dutch entity were added to the UK listing. Yesterday, the shares rose by 0.9 percent, or 14.5p, at 1666p.

Meanwhile, Associated British Foods, owner of the Primark clothing chain and a large number of grocery and sugar brands, found themselves in a sticky place. In a rare victory for the struggling High Street, Primark supported the sale of the company in the light of lower sugar prices and a currency exchange rate of £ 20 million.

John Bason, financial director of ABF, said that sugar production in the EU is going through a very painful period of restructuring & # 39;

Last year, the EU removed quotas that had limited the production of sugar beet and prices had ceased. After that, producers increased their output quickly.

Bason said: & # 39; Those two things together have ensured that the price of sugar dropped more and faster than we expected. & # 39;

He denied, however, that the conglomerate relies too heavily on Primark to stop its results.

Although many companies rely on online shopping sites to make up for the grief in the High Street, Primark is one of the few retailers that still does not offer a website service. Nevertheless, it is much better than many of his peers.

By eliminating the effect of currency fluctuations, Primark's revenue grew by 5.5 percent, but at stores that opened for more than a year, they fell by 2 percent.

ABF gave the cold start of the year and an unusually hot summer as the cause for the turnover of the chain in Northern Europe.

Despite the misery of traditional retailers, Bason said that the plan is to stay with High Street.

Primark opens next year the largest store ever in Birmingham, even after adding another 15 to its total this year.

But if we look at the performance of ABF as a whole, investors seemed somewhat disappointed. Stocks fell by 0.6 percent, or 13p, to 2257p.

The FTSE 100 ended the day with a fractional 0.02 percent higher, or 1.6 points, at 7279.3 points, because the latent trade tensions continued on miners.