1630: Close The ECB sprung a surprise with further rate cuts, as the euro fell to $1.30, while analysts said German production data could dent hopes of a rebound in GDP. BP was found to have been grossly negligent in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill and, as a result, it was the biggest faller. Standard life was the biggest riser after announcing the sale of its Canadian unit for £2.2bn. The FTSE 100 closed up 4.39 points at 6,877.97.
1530: BP has been found by a federal US judge to have been grossly negligent in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, Bloomberg reports.
1500: US ISM service sector gauge jumps to 596. for the month of August from 58.7 for the month before (consensus: 57.7), its highest since August 2005.
1327: The US private sector added 204,000 payrolls in August, according to ADP, down from 218,000 the month before and below the 220,000 expected by the market.
1245: The European Central Bank (ECB) decided to surprise markets on Thursday, unexpectedly cutting all its main policy rates.
1200: The Bank of England has kept its main policy rate and the size of its asset purchase facility unchanged at 0.5% and £375bn, respectively, as expected.
1033: Supergroup is the standout performer on the FTSE 350 today, up 10.8% at 1,159p, after reporting a 3.7% decline in LFL sales in its first quarter, not as bad as the 4-4.5% drop that the market had feared. Meanwhile, it noted improving trends in the second quarter, implying that LFL sales had turned positive over the last five weeks. Investec said that the statement should "reassure" investors and that Supergroup's sales momentum is "on the right trajectory". Nevertheless, the stock is still well below the highs of 1,749p reached in the spring.
0930: UK stocks are rangebound ahead of the ECB but continue to fluctuate close to a 14-year high. The FTSE 100 is up 12 points at 6,885. The index climbed to 6,873.58 by the close on Wednesday, after hitting an intraday high of 6,898.62 during the session - its highest intraday level since the record 6,950.60 set in late December 1999.
0854: Stocks are registering slight gains in the early going, with traders bracing for the European Central Bank's policy announcement and press briefing this afternoon, while the Monetary Policy Committee's own rate decision is expected to be a non-event this time around. Standard Life is in the lead early on after announcing the sale of its Canadian unit for £2.2bn. Hargreaves Lansdown and Morrison are in the red again, leading fallers on the top flight index. A spate of important US data is due out later in the day although markets' reaction is likely to be muted given that we are in the run-up to Friday's all-important non-farm payrolls figures. FTSE 100 up 8 to 6,882.