BUSINESS CLOSE: FTSE makes modest gains

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BUSINESS CLOSE: FTSE makes modest gains; Balfour Beatty fined £49m on US fraud claims; Flutter buys Italian gambling firm for £1.6bn


London stocks found their festive cheer on the last full day of trading before Christmas, with the FTSE 100 closing up 0.4 per cent at 7,373.3 and the FTSE 250 rising 0.8 per cent to 23,266.75.  

In company news, the US subsidiary of Balfour Beatty has been fined £49million following criminal and civil investigations by the Department of Justice, which probed performance incentive fees related to maintenance work at military housing installations.

Balfour Beatty Communities has pleaded guilty to one count of fraud and has agreed to the appointment of an independent compliance monitor for a three-year period.

Betfair and Poker Stars owner Flutter Entertainment is set to buy Italian online gaming operator Sisal for £1.62billion.

The latest example of merger and acquisition activity in the gambling market, which has seen a flurry of deals in the past year, will see Flutter expand its footprint in Europe.

The City of London has retained its crown as the hottest market in Europe for new companies to list on the stock market.

Around £13.9billion was raised through floats in the Square Mile over the last year, beating its closest continental rivals Stockholm and Amsterdam, which raised £9.4billion and £7.2billion respectively.

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The US subsidiary of Balfour Beatty has been fined £49million by the country's Department of Justice

The US subsidiary of Balfour Beatty has been fined £49million by the country’s Department of Justice

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