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Thursday, 19 October, 2000, 20:39 GMT 21:39 UK
Freeserve ejected from FTSE 100

UK internet service provider Freeserve will be struck from the list of the country's top 100 listed companies, the FTSE 100 index, on Monday.

Freeserve has fallen victim to the recent slide of its share price and two large company demergers.

BG Group - once part of the British Gas empire - is spinning off its gas pipelines and telecoms business, trading under the name Lattice Group.

Both firms are large enough to qualify for the FTSE 100, which lists the 100 most valuable firms on the London Stock Exchange, measured by looking at the combined value of all their shares.

Also on Monday, P&O will split itself into P&O Princess Cruises, the firm's cruise ship division, and its ports, ferries and logistics operations, which will keep the P&O name.

The larger and glamorous P&0 Princess Cruises will stay in the Footsie, while the grittier P&O drops out.

In this demerger game of musical chairs, Freeserve will be left standing on the sidelines, yet again.

Freeserve was one of the high tech, new economy firms that made a spectacular entry into the list of FTSE 100 firms this spring.

Several of the newcomers have already dropped out, and now it is Freeserve's turn to make space for old economy stalwarts.

To make things worse for Freeserve's self-esteem, another FTSE 100 company - Woolwich bank - is set to leave the stock market listings for good on Tuesday, but Freeserve cannot sneak back in to take its place.

The Woolwich, a former building society, was recently bought by Barclays Bank and trading in its shares will cease on Tuesday.

The bank will now be replaced by one of the companies on the reserves lists of FTSE International, which compiles the stock list.

Among the candidates for the stockmarkets top honours is a raft of former Footsie members, among them Shire Pharmaceuticals, Associated British Foods, Rolls-Royce, Hanson and Psion.

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See also:

06 Sep 00 | Business
Techs make FTSE comeback
09 Oct 00 | Business
Freeserve cuts off heavy users
28 Sep 00 | Business
Freeserve losses double
26 Sep 00 | Business
Freeserve tackles network trouble
07 Mar 00 | Business
Freeserve shares tumble
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