Investors kept an eye on Benfield Group, hoping that the FTSE 250 company could see a change of fortune.
Traders noted that there has been some stake building in the broker recently, with US investment group Artisan Partners lifting its holding in the group to 22.9 million shares, worth 10.2% of the company.
It is now one of the biggest shareholders in Benfield, and is well known in the stock market, having recently spearheaded a drive to prevent estate agency company Countrywide from being taken over. Its rejection of a bid for Countrywide eventually saw the group being bought for a higher price.
Benfield, which has been trading at a year low, was also the subject of a bullish note from Seymour Pierce on Tuesday.
It initiated coverage of the shares with a ‘buy’ rating, saying: “Despite a weak dollar and a softening rating environment, 2007 profits could surprise on the upside.” As Insurance Times went to press, Benfield was trading at 307p.
A broker note was also issued on Brit Insurance, trading at 340p. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods published an underperform rating on the shares and 275p price target, following an investor meeting with the group last Friday about its UK commercial business.
Traders also kept an eye on Domestic & General, which in May was revealed to have received a takeover approach from home energy services group Homeserve.
The shares are at £12.25 and have been very volatile recently on vague concerns that talks could have hit a stumbling block.
Yvette Essen is stock market reporter for the The Daily Telegraph