The FTSE 100 is up 16.2 points, or 0.25%, to 6,575.7 in early trading, as financial stocks help to boost the index.
British Airways is also up 2.04% to 500p, while Compass Group has climbed 1.34% to 378.5p, although gains are being limited by Enterprise Inns which has slipped 1.1% to 766p.
Intercontinental Hotels is the biggest loser with a fall of 1.82% to £13.47, as yesterday’s bid speculation died away, while BT Group has fallen 1.19% to 311.5p, ITV has slipped 0.92% to 118.9p, and Detica Group is down 0.87% to 368.5p.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 Stock Average fell 30.40, or 0.2%, to 17,498.60 at the 3pm close, as banking stocks dropped on speculation they will report a fall in profit for last year.
Mizuho lost 5,000 yen, or 0.7%, to 757,000, while Sumitomo Mitsui slid 20,000 yen, or 1.9%, to 1.06 million, and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, the nation's largest lender, fell 10,000 yen, or 0.8%, to 1.31 million.
Elsewhere Sony, the world's second-biggest consumer electronics maker, jumped 170 yen, or 2.6%, to 6,630, while Sharp rose 95 yen, or 4.4%, to 2,240, Canon added 63 yen, or 0.4%, to 7,000, and Hitachi slumped 33 yen, or 3.7%, to 864.
Softbank, Japan's second-largest high-speed internet access provider, tumbled 95 yen, or 3.7%, to 2,450, while Nomura Holdings, the country's biggest brokerage, fell 30 yen, or 1.2%, to 2,395, and Nippon Telegraph & Telephone slumped 16,000 yen, or 2.8%, to 565,000.
In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 103.69 points, or 0.77%, to 13,487.53, following better than expected industrial and housing figures.
Johnson & Johnson was among the biggest gainers with a rise of 1.99% to $63.05, after Warren Buffet confirmed his company Berkshire Hathaway had taken a stake in the firm.
Procter & Gamble made the largest gains with a rise of 2.01% to $63.32, closely followed by AT&T which added 1.86% to $41.14, while JP Morgan Chase climbed 1.83% to $52.98, and American Express advanced 1.52% to $63.98.
Just four stocks lost ground in yesterday’s session, led by General Motors which fell 0.72% to $31.74, closely followed by Alcoa which slipped 0.64% to $39.04, while Wal-Mart dropped 0.46% to $47.18, and Caterpillar declined 0.08% to $75.95.
If you have any comments you would like to add to this story or would like to speak to its author about a similar subject, telephone Nyree Stewart on 020 7034 2681 or email [email protected]IFAonline
Three years at the Treasury
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Letter from the frontline
Breaching SEC rules
In Leeds since 1969