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Here are three things you need to know in the financial markets this morning from investment writer, Tony Cross.

#1. Glaxo defends rebuttal of Unilever bid

Following media reports over the weekend, both GSK and Unilever [LON:ULVR] have released updates over the attempted acquisition of GSK’s consumer healthcare business by Unilever. Three approaches were made, the last of which was worth £50 billion but was still said to materially undervalue the target. This now looks like posturing to get investors involved, as Unilever is somewhat “up against it” to ensure it keeps delivering value, something which incurred the wrath of fund managers in recent weeks. This story is likely to run for some time yet.

#2. Taylor Wimpey sees excellent performance, reiterates commitment to sort cladding issues

Home builder Taylor Wimpey [LON:TW.] issued a trading statement this morning covering the full year to December 31st. The company notes it put in an excellent performance, which was in line with expectations and that demand and the forward order book both remain strong. Significant improvements in operating margins have also been delivered and there’s one line that does warrant further mention in here, namely regarding fire safety works on apartment buildings. All properties built by the company in the last 20 years will have remedial work paid for by Taylor Wimpey – a commitment that was made almost a year ago – so hopefully one that can be fully resolved quickly.

#3. 88 Energy Alaska drilling set to recommence

Over to AIM now for an update from oil explorer 88E [LON:88E]. They have provided an update on the Merlin 2 drilling rig in Alaska where critically the company is on the cusp of receiving new drilling permits to start work next month. There’s some push-back here from environmental groups however, so expect developments here to be closely followed.

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Please note this article does not constitute investment advice. Investors are encouraged to do their own research beforehand or consult a professional advisor.

Tony Cross

Tony Cross

Tony Cross is a market commentator with over 15 years of experience, producing compelling, insightful copy for journalists and investors alike. Focusing on macroeconomics, UK blue chip equities and inter market analysis, Cross's commentary is well regarded for its clarity and ability to cut through the waffle. He has been quoted in publications as diverse as The Financial Times, The Times, The Guardian and The Sun. He has also been a regular guest on both Share Radio and TipTV.

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