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News & Tips: Igas Energy, Weir Group, Plexus Holdings, Balfour Beatty, Pace, Sound Oil, Chariot Oil & Gas & more

Equities are flat today as a pre-Christmas lull sets in.

IC TIP UPDATES:

Onshore oil and has specialist Igas Energy (IGAS) made revenues of £33.4m in the six months to September, compared with nothing the previous year, as its production began to ramp up. The company is now producing more than 2,500 barrels of oil equivalent a day and has several prospects in its portfolio including unconventional gas assets which are now clearly supported by government policy. We keep our buy rating.

Engineer Weir Group (WEIR) has agreed the acquisition of Mathena, which supplies pressure control equipment to the oil and gas industry, for an initial $240m with a further $145m in potential add-ons. Buy.

Sell recommendationAmlin (AML) has confirmed that its losses from Superstorm Sandy claims will total £145m.

Meanwhile rival Lloyd’s insurer Lancashire Holdings (LRE) says its hit will be between $40 and $60m.

James Fisher Group (FSJ) has sold the Railway Engineering Company to Hitachi Europe for £25.5m. Buy.

Buy recommendation Tribal Group (TRB) is to acquire International Graduate Insight Group for up to £7.5m.

Nanoco (NANO) has extended its development contract with solar partner Tokyo Electron for the use of its bespoke quantum dot technology in solar cells. We keep our buy.

Yet another oil and gas major, Total, has signed up with Plexus Holdings (POS) for its well head technology. We maintain our buy recommendation.

FastJet (FJET) chairman David Lenigas has set his pay at a nominal £1 a year such is his confidence in the long term value the company is building in the African budget air travel space. Speculative buy.

KEY STORIES:

Set top box maker Pace (PIC) has confirmed that it will not be buying the Motorola Home set top business from Google after failing to agree a price.

Balfour Beatty (BBY) has been awarded a £270m contract to build tunnels for the rail system in Hong Kong.

OTHER COMPANY NEWS:

Investors in Gemfields’ (GEM) target Faberge have approved the proposed merger between the businesses.

Further testing at Bellzone Mining’s (BZM) Kalia iron ore project in Guinea have resulted in a 99 per cent increase in estimated tonnes and allowed the company to define a Direct Shipping Ore resource of 87.5m tonnes.

Sound Oil (SOU) says it expects drilling approval for the Nervesa appraisal well in January, allowing it to start drilling before the end of the month.

Namibian-focused oil and gas explorer Chariot Oil & Gas (CHAR) has announced the departure of its chief executive Paul Welch and commercial director James Burgess. Executive chairman Larry Bottomley steps in as chief executive.

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