The FTSE 100 index has ended the day up 45.7 points or 0.75% higher to close at 6,089.8, as the index never really looked throughout the day as though it would retreat from its strong start on Wednesday morning.
Stocks surged in opening trades because of the heavy gains posted by Wall Street overnight, fuelled by indications the recent cycle of interest rate rises may end soon. As a result, the ftse 100 index earlier in the day hit a new five-year high before dropping back slightly.
WPP Group topped the list of gainers with a rise of 4.39% to 701.5p, while Hanson added 4.25% to 760.5p, and International Power ended the day up 4.28% to 304.25p.
Meanwhile, poor results saw Associated British Foods end the day as the biggest faller by far with a drop of 6.47% to 788.5p, closely followed by Smith and Nephew, which slipped 1.73% to 511p.
In the US so far, the Dow Jones Industrial Average index is up 4.56 points, or 0.04%, to 11,273.33, with stocks seeing little change, as optimism over strong profits from major companies is being overshadowed by worries about higher interest rates after disappointing inflation data.
Earnings from companies such as manufacturer United Technologies and soft drink maker Coca-Cola raised investors' hopes about strong first-quarter profits, as United Technologies is up 5.43% to $62.10, while Coca-Cola has added 1.62% to $41.97.
Yahoo shares are also one of the top gainers, currently up 7% to $33.50, as the world's largest Internet media company maintained its outlook for the year and reported earnings in line with expectations.
Meanwhile, oil prices retreated in a positive move for stocks but were not far from all-time highs, caused by worries over supply disruption from Iran as the standoff with the West over its nuclear program remained. US crude oil futures are currently down $0.35 to $71 a barrel.IFAonline
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