- FTSE 100 at highest in 14 years
- Melrose, housing and mining stocks gain
- Travel peers easyJet and TUI Travel fall
techMARK 2,809.05 +0.52%
FTSE 100 6,875.58 +0.35%
FTSE 250 16,103.60 +0.77%
UK markets rose to their highest levels since early 2000 on Tuesday morning, helped by decent gains from Melrose, AstraZeneca, housing stocks and the heavyweight mining sector.
The FTSE 100 was trading 0.35% higher at 6,875.58 in early trading, setting a new 52-week intraday high of 6,877.39.
The index has now surpassed the 14-year closing high of 6,865.86 reached in February. It is now headed towards a mark not seen since the intraday record high of 6,950.6 registered on December 30th 1999.
"Now above 6,840 we look to 6,886 highs of Feb and all-time highs of 6,950 allowing the index to finally join its US peers making new records," said Mike van Dulken, Head of Research at Accendo Markets.
Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500
rose to fresh all-time highs on Wall Street on Monday evening, as a bout of M&A activity helped to offset heightened tensions in Ukraine.
"Equities are showing remarkable resilience shrugging off the geopolitics of Eastern Europe and, it would appear, banking on softer Chinese data making it a given that Beijing weighs in with another batch of stimulus to keep the slowing world #2 economy growing in-line with its targets," van Dulken said.
Economic figures overnight from China showed that the annual rates of growth in industrial production, fixed asset investment and retail sales all slowed slightly in April.
Melrose, AstraZeneca, housing stocks, miners provide a lift
Manufacturing conglomerate Melrose rose strongly after saying that trading in the first quarter was in line with expectations with order intake since the start of 2014 up 3% year-on-year. Investors were largely shrugging off a cautious outlook from the firm, which also said that currency headwinds had recently worsened. Broker Investec highlighed the encouraging signs in current trading and forward orders at the company.
US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer was rumoured to be planning to raise its cash-and-shares offer for UK rival AstraZeneca again, causing shares
in the latter to rise.
Housing stocks were in demand with Barratt Developments, Persimmon and Taylor Wimpey among the highest risers on the FTSE 350.
Miners were also performing well as risk appetite increased, including blue chips BHP Billiton, Glencore Xstrata and Anglo American.
Heading the other way was airline easyJet which was flying lower despite narrowing first-half losses by nearly 14% to £53m. The company said that revenue rose on the back of an increase in capacity and passenger numbers and lower-than-expected costs.
Travel and leisure peer TUI Travel was also lower as it said that the pre-tax loss widened 5% to £369m in the first half due to the timing of Easter.
Investment management and financial planning company Brewin Dolphin fell after saying that it will take a one-off charge of £32m this year after deciding to pull the roll-out of the JHC Figaro software across the group.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Melrose Industries (MRO) 295.90p +3.03%
Barratt Developments (BDEV) 385.10p +2.89%
Persimmon (PSN) 1,388.00p +2.06%
BHP Billiton (BLT) 1,984.00p +1.85%
Glencore Xstrata (GLEN) 335.20p +1.71%
Royal Mail (RMG) 569.50p +1.70%
Babcock International Group (BAB) 1,245.00p +1.63%
Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) 1,020.00p +1.59%
Anglo American (AAL) 1,665.00p +1.43%
ITV (ITV) 189.40p +1.39%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
easyJet (EZJ) 1,656.00p -4.28%
London Stock Exchange Group (LSE) 1,820.00p -1.89%
TUI Travel (TT.) 435.00p -1.49%
Vodafone Group (VOD) 222.60p -0.82%
Barclays (BARC) 255.15p -0.58%
Tullow Oil (TLW) 892.50p -0.56%
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) 2,176.00p -0.46%
United Utilities Group (UU.) 836.00p -0.42%
SABMiller (SAB) 3,189.50p -0.39%
Ashtead Group (AHT) 863.50p -0.29%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Taylor Wimpey (TW.) 112.30p +5.64%
Polymetal International (POLY) 588.50p +3.79%
Pace (PIC) 385.10p +3.52%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 335.00p +3.08%
Enterprise Inns (ETI) 149.40p +3.03%
Workspace Group (WKP) 575.00p +2.68%
Foxtons Group (FOXT) 312.50p +2.46%
Laird (LRD) 289.90p +2.26%
BlackRock World Mining Trust (BRWM) 478.50p +2.20%
Fisher (James) & Sons (FSJ) 1,349.00p +2.20%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Brewin Dolphin Holdings (BRW) 318.10p -2.84%
Ladbrokes (LAD) 145.90p -1.42%
Domino's Pizza Group (DOM) 525.50p -0.66%
Lonmin (LMI) 269.50p -0.63%
Daejan Holdings (DJAN) 4,769.00p -0.58%
Balfour Beatty (BBY) 227.80p -0.48%
Countrywide (CWD) 571.00p -0.44%
COLT Group SA (COLT) 143.70p -0.42%
Domino Printing Sciences (DNO) 795.50p -0.31%
Redrow (RDW) 284.10p -0.25%