Shares gained for a second day in a row in London as oil prices gained on fears output in Russia, now the second biggest exporter, may be cut because of bailiffs taking assets in lieu of tax payments from the country's biggest exporter Yukos.
BP alone added more than 8 points out of the FTSE 100’s 31.30 points rise to 4,356.20.
BP shares were up 9p to 497.75p. Some investors are betting the elimination of Yukos as a competitor on the Russian market will increase the value of BP’s joint venture investments there. Higher oil prices in the meantime could see the company soon top its record quarterly earnings recently reported.
BG Group, the gas exploration business, gained 11.75p to 341p after reporting a 41% rise in second quarter profit on rising gas prices and increased production.
HBOS ended up 19p at 694p after reporting interim results showing a 24% increase in first-half profit.
Man Group dropped 94p to 1,274p after a competitor suffered a sharp share price drop on news of disappointing earnings.
Unilever dropped for similar reasons, shedding 21.5p to 485.5p on news of a drop in its sales of ice-cream and tea products across Europe, sparking the first quarterly earnings drop in four years.
British Airways dropped 2.5p to 229p on news its staff may vote to strike in favour of higher pay.
Shares are down in New York at present after a lacklustre report into orders for durable goods was coupled with fears the Yukos situation could push oil prices higher again. A car bomb killed nearly 70 people in Iraq earlier today, suggesting oil exports from the country with the world’s second largest proven reserves could be a while in coming to market in any significant amount.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average index is currently down about 88 points to 9,996, while the broader S&P 500 is off by nearly 13 points to 1,082.IFAonline
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