European Midday Update: Markets Follow Wall Street Higher - TheStreet

LONDON -- The market is firm, with media stocks in the spotlight following the confirmed merger between advertising agencies Saatchi & Saatchi and Publicis of France. The share-swap deal theoretically values Saatchi at 500p per share, and the shares by midmorning were up 21.5p to 442.5 ($6.68).

In that wake,

Pearson

climbed 20p to

22.30,

Reuters

(RTRSY)

gained 46p to

12.16 and

BSkyB

(BSY)

moved up 15p to

13.20.

WPP

rose 37p to

10.00 as

Credit Lyonnais

reiterated its buy stance.

The

FTSE 100

made steady, if unspectacular, progress to stand 38.3 points up at 6528.5 following gains overnight by both the

DJIA

and the

Nasdaq

. Tech stocks also were higher with the

Techmark

up 63.1 points to 3420.5.

Leading the tech stocks was a newcomer to the Footsie index,

Bookham Technology

(BKHM)

, which gained 70p to

36.70.

Psion

continued to rise, up 41p to 611, following reports that it will float its

Symbian

mobile phone venture ahead of schedule.

Telcos got a boost from a rise in

British Telecom

(BTY)

of 12p to 968 as the market heard that BT has, for 14 years, owned a crucial U.S. patent to one of the key building blocks of the World Wide Web. BT has now decided to commercialize the invention and analysts believe it could be worth hundreds of millions of pounds.

Vodafone AirTouch

(VOD) - Get Report

was 6p ahead to 318.

Europe's other major stock markets were higher early Tuesday, with the

Xetra Dax

in Frankfurt up 54.30 to 7253.10 and the

CAC 40

in Paris 61.40 higher to 6566.56. The

Neuer Markt's

tech-heavy

Nemax 50

index was up 60.1 to 6458.3.

Blue-chip German tech shares were higher, with software maker

SAP

(SAP) - Get Report

up 20.50 euros to 643.50 ($616.12),

Siemens

(SMAWY)

up 3.08 euros to 162.33 and

Infineon

(IFX)

3.41 euros higher to 86.71.

In Paris, conglomerate

Vivendi

(VVDIY)

fell 7.45 euros to 89.00, after announcing it would merge with

Seagram

(VO) - Get Report

in a $34 billion deal.

Many European telcos were in positive territory.

Telefonica

(TEF) - Get Report

was up 0.42 euro to 21.92 and

France Telecom

(FTE)

rose 4.30 euros to 160.30. However,

Deutsche Telekom

(DT) - Get Report

was down 0.14 euro to 65.86.