1630: Close The FTSE closed up 57 points on Friday, as investors continued to grow in confidence that a resolution to the US debt crisis could be achieved. Travis Perkins was a strong riser on the back of a 'buy' rating from Liberum Capital, while Citigroup comments lifted Whitbread. As had been expected, shares
in the Royal Mail rocketed more than 40 per cent on their first day of trading. In economic news, UK construction output declined in August from July but was higher than a year ago, driven by a rise in new work, while house prices rose by 3.8 per cent on the year in September as sales climbed 12 per cent. Over the week the FTSE has risen 0.52 per cent, or 33.31 points. Today it closed up 56.70 points at 6,487.19.
1455: The University of Michigan´s preliminary reading on US consumer confidence slipped in October, to the 75.2 point level from 77.5 in the month before (Consensus: 76.0). FTSE 100 up 55 to 6,486.
1315: Shares of Croda are now leading fallers on the Footsie on the heels of a downgrade from JP Morgan to neutral from overweight.
1245: JP Morgan has released better than expected adjusted proforma
earnings per share for the third quarter of 1.42 dollars, versus the analyst consensus of 1.30 dollars. Pre-market futures are now pointing to opening gains of 0.2 per cent, on average, for the main Wall Street equity benchmarks. FTSE 100 up 51 to 6,482.
1100: UK house price values increased by 0.5 per cent month-on-month in September, to reach an average of 235,534 pounds, London-based real-estate researcher Acadametrics and LSL Property Services Plc (LSL) said in a report today.
0945: Analysts at Danske Bank have said that the correction seen across equity markets may be 'coming to an end' following the recent decline (the MSCI World index has fallen four per cent from its peak). 'Stocks are no longer technically overbought and we start to see signs that the market is feeling a bottom,' they said. Danske Bank also said that there are signs that the 'logjam' in the US is easing - 'this is a bit earlier than we expected', they admitted. Meanwhile, third-quarter earnings season is expected to be 'robust' outside the US with guidance from companies anticipated to be more positive - 'this is likely to underpin stock markets in coming weeks,' they said. The FTSE 100 is up 32.6 at 6,463.09.
0930: UK construction output dropped by 0.1 per cent month-on-month in August (Consensus: 0.8 per cent), ONS figures just out show.
0919: Restaurant and hotels owner Whitbread is providing a lift this morning after Citigroup upgraded the stock to 'buy', saying that improved sentiment around the European economies 'suggests that we could be at the start of a renewed upgrade cycle for European focused hotel names'. Whitbread gained strongly on Thursday after one analyst cited the possibility that it could spin off its Costa coffee chain. The stock has risen by nearly seven per cent so far this week. The FTSE 100 is up 31.56 points at 6,462.05.
0845: Shares of Royal Mail are soaring in their stock market debut, popping 30 per cent higher to over 450p from their initial public offering price of 330p. The issue has been more than 20 times oversubscribed, with 33 per cent going to retail investors (over 700,000 individual applications according to ETX Capital). Out on the top flight index early gains are being led by shares of Standard Life and Whitbread. The construction output index for August is released at 09:30. To be had in account are the dovish remarks out of European Central Bank President Mario Draghi yesterday evening. FTSE 100 up 5 to 6,436.