Markets in the US were buoyed by optimism that the Federal Reserve will impose an aggressive cut in i...
This in turn lifted the FTSE 100 which finished the day higher on the back of a tech and telecom rally. The FTSE 100 rallied 95.2 points to 5646.8.
Leading the FTSE 100 risers was telecom group Telewest with a rise of 8p to 124p. Telecom equipment supplier Marconi followed with a gain of 25p to 389p. Yesterday, Marconi slumped to levels unseen since October 1998 after its US peer Corning issued a profit warning. But Corning later posted a rise in the US swept higher by the tech and telecom optimism.
Insurer CGNU was raised to "buy" from "market perform" by analyst Roger Doig at J.P. Morgan. The analyst tacked on a £1 to his former price target on the stock to 1200p from 1100p previously. The stock added 52p to 972p.
Utility companies took some falls in the FTSE 100 but this was largely seen to be due to profit taking and the general sway away from defensives towards the new economy. The outlook for utility groups should be pretty stable for the time being with regulatory hurdles over. International Power was worst hit, down 9p to 235p.
Elsewhere, amongst the FTSE 250, shares in radio station Capital Radio were under the cosh. Analyst Simon Mays-Smith at UBS Warburg tuned out of Capital downgrading his recommendation on the stock to "sell"' from "reduce". The analyst also cut a £1 off his price target on the stock to 900p from 1000p previously. The downgrade was in line with the city's sombre mood regarding the stock and it plunged 75p to 940p.
Over in the US at midday the Dow Jones was up 45.07 to 10004.18, the Standard and Poor's 500 lifted 8.54 to1179.35 and the technology biased index the Nasdaq Composite advanced 15.94 to 1967.12.
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