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LONDON -- The trading range on the FTSE 100 was once again narrow this morning as investors remain somewhat cautious following Wall Street's fall on Friday.

By midmorning, the Footsie was down 10.9 points to 6324.8. The


index predictably took its cue from Nasdaq and was 43.6 points lower to 3582.9.

One worry this week is

The Bank of England

meeting on Thursday on domestic interest rates.

In the media sector,


put out good first-half earnings figures, but the market was far more interested in its proposed acquisition of

National Computer Systems


of the U.S. for $2.5 billion, or $73 cash. This purchase is to be funded by a deeply discounted 3-for-11 rights issue of 170 million new Pearson shares at 10 pound per share to raise approximately 1.7 billion pounds. The Pearson share price fell 115p to 18.95 ($28.43).

Scottish Power's

telecom and Internet unit


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disappointed the market by posting operating losses of 18 million pounds for the fiscal first quarter compared with a loss of 5 million pounds for the same period last year. The shares dipped 43p to 177, the market latching on to the statement in which the company admits that some areas of its business have turned in a disappointing performance.

A totally different story unfolded at


, the designer of microwave and millimeter wave products for wireless and cable telecommunications systems. Excellent earnings and a confident statement boosted the shares 45p to 892.

The market liked the first-half figures from



. The company met estimates moving the shares up 8.5p to 893.5.

Europe's other bourses were mixed. The

CAC 40

in Paris was down 9 at 6407, while the

Xetra Dax

in Frankfurt was up 14 at 7142.

In Frankfurt, supermarket chain

Metro AG

rose 1.34 euros to 45.35 ($41.72) following German press reports that it is in talks with

Wal-Mart Stores

(WMT) - Get Walmart Inc. Report

to exchange some of its chains for the U.S. retailers

Sam's Club