FTSE opens higher with housebuilders on top

FTSE 100 opened higher, climbing 28 points to 7,221. Housebuilders dominated the early risers, boosted by reports the government is planning a cut to stamp duty.

Aveva said that Schneider Electric, the French industrial conglomerate, confirmed plans to buy the 41% of shares it does not already own in the UK company. That values the software firm at £9.5bn.

JD Sports reached an agreement with ousted chairman Peter Cowgill following his departure. Cowgill has been paid his salary and contractual benefits up until 25 May and will be eligible for any appropriate annual bonus.

The Office for National Statistics said soaring inflation saw the interest on government debt jump by 22% year-on-year to £8.2 billion last month. That is the highest August figure since monthly records began in April 1997.

Inspiration Healthcare won an order worth roughly £600,000 from its Japanese distributor. The order is for the supply of the company’s SLE infant ventilators and associated consumables.

Galliford Try hiked its dividend, announced a share buy-back, and gave a confident outlook after profits grew more than expected. The construction group reported a £19.1mln profit before tax and exceptional costs, up 68%.

Cellular Goods made a “significant expansion” to its ‘Look Better’ range, launching three new products. Danish supermodel Helena Christensen will be the face of the anti-ageing range.

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