largely trod water in the morning session, although banks had a good session on the back of rumours that the implementation of the strict new Basel III capital rules may be delayed.
Financials lead the way
Banks and insurers have been buoyed by Deutsche Bank upgrading the sectors to "overweight". However, it was financial services provider Hargreaves Lansdown which topped the leader board in the morning session, after it said it had got off to a "pleasing" start to its new financial year.
Hargreaves Lansdown's revenue, assets under administration (AuA) and client numbers all hit record levels in the July-September quarter, traditionally the firm's quietest period.
Talking of insurers, Direct Line is lower today after making an impressive market début on Thursday which saw the shares climb from the flotation price of 175p to 188p in conditional trading.
Building materials supplier Travis Perkins saw like-for-like sales fall back in the group's second quarter (to end-September), as the group struggled with the poor weather and the competing attraction of the Olympics. Margins are also under pressure, the firm said, prompting management to tighten up even more on cost management.
Industrial materials provider Morgan Crucible has delivered a profits warning as trading conditions have deteriorated across most geographies, particularly in Europe and China. Sector peers Bodycote and IMI fall in sympathy, as analysts look around to see where the next profits warning will come from; Cookson got its warning out of the way on Monday of this week.
Information technology services provider Computacenter is having to spend time and money getting service levels up to the required standard on some new German contracts, but things are going well in the home market.
The price of Brent crude is drifting lower, with the most actively traded futures contract down 74 cents to $114.97 a barrel.
Gilts are on the rise. The yield on the benchmark 10-year gilt is down to 1.77% from 1.78% overnight. Yields move inversely to prices.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 716.00p +4.07%
Barclays (BARC) 239.20p +2.82%
Standard Chartered (STAN) 1,432.00p +2.62%
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 40.15p +2.28%
Aviva (AV.) 330.40p +1.01%
Admiral Group (ADM) 1,096.00p +1.01%
Intertek Group (ITRK) 2,766.00p +0.88%
Capital Shopping Centres Group (CSCG) 335.70p +0.87%
Reckitt Benckiser Group (RB.) 3,633.00p +0.67%
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) 275.60p +0.66%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
GKN (GKN) 210.90p -2.81%
Melrose (MRO) 229.60p -2.67%
Kazakhmys (KAZ) 728.00p -2.41%
IMI (IMI) 904.00p -2.32%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,285.00p -2.21%
Evraz (EVR) 242.70p -1.98%
Smiths Group (SMIN) 1,055.00p -1.77%
Meggitt (MGGT) 405.70p -1.65%
Serco Group (SRP) 574.00p -1.54%
Croda International (CRDA) 2,290.00p -1.38%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Bumi (BUMI) 289.00p +11.58%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 69.05p +4.46%
Stobart Group Ltd. (STOB) 116.80p +3.36%
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 755.50p +3.35%
St. Modwen Properties (SMP) 201.30p +3.12%
Interserve (IRV) 381.90p +3.10%
Lonmin (LMI) 511.50p +3.04%
Centamin (DI) (CEY) 103.30p +2.68%
NMC Health (NMC) 188.90p +2.66%
Smith (DS) (SMDS) 201.70p +2.23%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Morgan Crucible Co (MGCR) 227.30p -11.14%
Spectris (SXS) 1,580.00p -4.88%
Senior (SNR) 187.00p -4.10%
Bodycote (BOY) 359.80p -3.85%
Computacenter (CCC) 367.90p -3.18%
Yule Catto & Co (YULC) 155.60p -3.11%
Fenner (FENR) 358.90p -3.00%
Spirax-Sarco Engineering (SPX) 1,955.00p -2.83%
Travis Perkins (TPK) 1,103.00p -2.82%
Renishaw (RSW) 1,690.00p -2.82%
FTSE TechMARK - Risers
NCC Group (NCC) 1,010.00p +3.59%
Kofax (KFX) 301.25p +3.17%
FTSE TechMARK - Fallers
Antisoma (ASM) 1.55p -7.46%
Hiwave Technologies (HIW) 1.07p -6.52%
Oxford Biomedica (OXB) 2.50p -3.85%
CML Microsystems (CML) 391.50p -2.12%