The FTSE 100 index ended the day up 50.10 points at 4,271.70 pushed ahead by strong gains in the ban...
At one point this morning the index was down 30 points on yesterday's close, but a strong start to trading in New York this afternoon ahead of an interest rate decision by the US Federal Reserve encouraged investors back into London's market.
Kingfisher advanced 7.5p to 199p to lead the FTSE gainers following yesterday's news that a director bought 18,000 shares.
Mobile phone company MmO2 also staged a rally, gaining 1.5p to 43p.
After that, however, it was a tale of financial strength as Standard Chartered gained 25p to 728p, Bradford & Bingley added 11p to 340p, HBOS added 22p to 738p, and Abbey National added 15p to 744.5p.
HSBC added 10.5p to 751.5p.
Granada led the losers, dropping 3p to 82.5p as investors continue to wonder what strategy the company is going to adopt to get back on track for earnings growth.
The FTSE 250 mid-caps index added 21.6 points to 4,723.1, led by builder Barratt, which gained 36.25p to 411.75p after Schroder Salomon Smith Barney raised its recommendation on the stock.
The big shocker was British Energy, which shed almost a third of its value today, down 26.75p to 63p following yesterday's news that a problem with its nuclear reactors could force it to shut down much of its energy producing plant for the rest of the year.
'Managed separation update'
The chairman discusses his surprise holiday job
Three months on
Regulator has stepped in