|The London Stock Exchange was yesterday considering launching an investigation into irregular trading in London Clubs International shares after the price rose by 40 per cent in the two weeks before the company received a bid from rival Stanley Leisure, the Independent reports.|
The LSE has been looking closely at the trades, which were much higher than normal dealing volumes. It may pass the case on to the Financial Services Authority to scrutinise more closely to try to discover whether individuals in the market knew about and were acting on the £250m (US$392.6 million) bid by Stanley Leisure, which leaked out in Sunday press reports.
The move came as Stanley Leisure confirmed `it has held some discussions’ with other parties about the possibility of making an offer for LCI, which owns a string of prestigious casinos including 50 St James.
Trading volumes in LCI shares raced ahead from an average daily rate of about 460,000 in early November to 2.8 million in the past fortnight. Last Thursday and Friday saw 5.5 million and 6 million shares change hands respectively. The shares jumped from 15.5p on 18 November to 22p yesterday, down 1.25p from Friday's close.