BP, Debenhams, IL&P, WH Smith, Tesco: U.K., Irish Equity Preview

The following is a list of companies that may have unusual share-price changes in U.K. and Irish markets. Stock symbols are in parentheses and prices are from the last market close.

The benchmark FTSE 100 Index gained 45.97, or 0.8 percent, to 6,010.44. The FTSE All-Share Index rose 0.7 percent, while Ireland’s ISEQ Index advanced 1 percent.

Ashmore Group Plc (ASHM LN): The emerging-markets investor said assets under management rose 8 percent in the fiscal third quarter to $50.3 billion with net inflows of $2.3 billion. The shares added 0.4 percent to 352.6 pence.

Bank of Ireland Plc (BKIR ID): The bank’s loss narrowed by 66 percent in 2010 as a gain from bond exchanges helped offset losses from real-estate loans. The shares surged 10 percent to 27.6 euro cents.

BP Plc (BP/ LN): BP and OAO Rosneft agreed to extend a share swap deadline by a month to May 16. BP gained 0.6 percent to 464.2 pence.

Daisy Group Plc (DAY LN): The business communications provider forecast that its preliminary results will be “in line with market expectations.” The shares increased 3.6 percent to 96.4 pence.

Debenhams Plc (DEB LN): The London-based retailer said first-half income climbed to 91.5 million pounds ($149.6 million) from 80.1 million pounds a year earlier. Debenhams also said Chief Executive Officer Rob Templeman will retire and quit the board at the end of the company’s fiscal year. Michael Sharp, Templeman’s deputy since 2008, will succeed him on Sept. 5. The shares rose 2.9 percent to 66.8 pence.

Henderson Group Plc (HGG LN): Hellman & Friedman sold its remaining stake in fund manager Henderson. The private-equity firm sold 49.8 million shares. Henderson’s stock lost 0.5 percent to 168.6 pence.

Irish Life & Permanent Group Holdings Plc (IPM ID): Ireland’s biggest life insurer named Alan Cook chairman as it prepared to sell its life assurance and fund management unit before falling under government control. The shares slumped 6 percent to 14 euro cents.

WH Smith Plc (SMWH LN): The U.K.-based magazine retailer and stationer reported first-half profit of 51 million pounds, compared with 48 million pounds a year earlier. The shares fell 0.6 percent to 450.7 pence.

Tesco Plc (TSCO LN): The U.K.’s largest retailer may extend a domestic sale-and-leaseback program to its international property assets to fund overseas expansion, analysts said. The shares added 2 percent to 406 pence.

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