FTSE 100 set to gain for second week on Brexit hopes; British Land jumps
London's FTSE 100 rose on Friday, en route to a second straight weekly gain, as hopes of a Brexit deal and a new jobs support plan in the UK eclipsed worries about a fresh surge in COVID-19 cases, while British Land jumped on resuming dividends.
London's FTSE 100 rose on Friday, en route to a second straight weekly gain, as hopes of a Brexit deal and a new jobs support plan in the UK eclipsed worries about a fresh surge in COVID-19 cases, while British Land jumped on resuming dividends. British finance minister Rishi Sunak will announce later in the day a new plan to support jobs as the government tries to slow the renewed spread of COVID-19 by ordering the closure of some businesses, the finance ministry said.
The blue-chip FTSE 100 index climbed 0.4%, with mining and oil stocks leading the gains. The mid-cap index added 0.3%. Capping gains, however, was a slower-than-expected growth in Britain's economy in August from July, official data showed on Friday.
"Traders are beginning to enter the bad-news-is-good-news mode, as they feel there is more room left for the UK government to undertake fresh stimulus steps as headline data continue to disappoint," said Roland Kaloyan, a strategist at SocGen. "A slower drop in few corporate earnings was also providing an added push," Kaloyan said.
Higher oil prices and hopes of fresh U.S. stimulus have supported the export-heavy index over the past two weeks, offsetting worries about the pandemic's economic damage. Real estate firm British Land rose 5.3% to the top of the FTSE 100 after saying it would resume paying dividends in November and that it was in active talks with its tenants over rent payments.
TP ICAP, the world's biggest inter-dealer broker, dropped 2.1% on announcing plans to raise about $425 million through a rights issue to buy Liquidnet Holdings for a revised consideration of between $575 million and $700 million.
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