FTSE 100 makes gains

03-07-2008

FTSE 100 makes gains
The FTSE 100 closed up 0.69 per cent today, despite initial morning falls, as US job figures proved not as terrible as hoped and the ECB hiked eurozone interest rates.

The index ended the day up 37.30 points at 5463.60.

HBOS took the honours for the day, rising 7.28 per cent, while Royal Bank of Scotland was up 4.53 per cent – as a little confidence returned to banking.

Miner Antofagasta rose 6.6 per cent, BSkyB was up 3.97 per cent and power station operator Drax rose 3.85 per cent.

However, retailers suffered over the day.

Sainsbury fell 3.79 per cent and Carphone Warehouse dropped 3.337 per cent.

Ferrexpo slid 3.06 per cent, BG Group was down 3.02 per cent and John Wood Group dropped 3.01 per cent.

Outside the FTSE 100, after two bad days for construction, Bellway and Bovis Homes rose 8.01 per cent and 7.88 per cent respectively.

Barratt Developments rose 6.21 per cent – despite reports of 1,000 job cuts for the builder.

Balfour Beatty and Travis Perkins both rose 5.42 per cent.

David Jones, chief market strategist at IG Index, said: "The term 'rollercoaster' could be applied to many of the recent days we have seen for the stock market – but this afternoon has seen the FTSE 100 travel a massive 300 points as sentiment has swung from positive to negative and back to positive again.

"US jobless numbers came in as expected, which was initially seen as something of a relief by markets but - as seen so often over recent weeks - the light at the end of the tunnel was viewed as a train by some traders and markets quickly reversed."

The long weekend in the US - for July 4th - should add some calm for the markets tomorrow, but optimism is low.

"The FTSE 100 continues to just about hold above the lows for the year in the 5300 area but with the broader FTSE 250 and FTSE All Share indices already having set new 2008 lows, you would have to be a committed optimist to feel that further weakness next week is going to be any sort of a surprise," concluded Mr Jones.


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