The FTSE 100 is up 36.1 points, or 0.56%, to 6,498, as mining and energy stocks push the index towards 6,500 despite a fall by financials.
Royal Bank of Scotland is the biggest faller ahead of ABN Amro’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) today with a drop of 0.65% to £19.85, while BP has slipped 0.26% to 570p.
Legal & General is also down 0.57% to 156.3p, as it posted first quarter revenue which is 6% below expectations, despite a rise in quarterly new UK life and pensions volumes of 27% to £303m.
Centrica has dropped 0.2% to 383p, closely followed by Sainsbury which has slipped 0.18% to 567p, although losses are being offset by Standard Chartered Bank which is up 1.69% to £15.69.
Detica Group is posting the biggest gains with a rise of 2.08% to 367.25p, while British Airways has advanced 2.07% to 518.5p, miner Antofagasta has added 1.93% to 540.25p, and International Power has climbed 1.87% to 436.25p.
In Japan the Nikkei 225 Stock Average added 193.01, or 1.1%, to 17,429.17, as positive earnings news boosted investor confidence.
JFE, the world's third-biggest steelmaker by output, jumped 280 yen, or 4.4%, to 6,720, while Daido Steel, a speciality steelmaker, surged 64 yen, or 10%, to 704 yen, and Nippon Steel, the world's No. 2 maker of the alloy, jumped 39 yen, or 5.2%, to 785.
Honda advanced 70 yen, or 1.8%, to 4,060, as it announced fourth-quarter profit was 176.2 billion yen, beating estimates, while Hitachi Construction Machinery, which boosted fourth- quarter profit by two-thirds, surged 300 yen, or 8.6%, to 3,800.
Komatsu, the world's second-largest maker of construction machinery, jumped 100 yen, or 3.8%, to 2,735, while Hitachi Chemical climbed 105 yen, or 4%, to 2,725, Shin-Etsu Chemical jumped 270 yen, or 3.6%, to 7,720 and Sumitomo Chemical rose 12 yen, or 1.5%, to 805.
Among consumer lenders Promise plunged 450 yen, or 11%, to 3,660, while Aiful, the fourth-biggest consumer lender by market value, slumped 335 yen, or 10%, to 2,965, and Acom, the largest, slid 360 yen, or 7.4%, to 4,480.
In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average broke through the 13,000 barrier with gains of 135.95 points, or 1.05%, to 12,089.89, following strong earnings news and an increase in durable goods orders which beat estimates.
Only one stock ended yesterday’s session lower, with 3M Company falling 0.04% to $76.97, although this slight loss was more than offset by oil company Exxon Mobil which climbed 1.68% to $79.92.
However, Alcoa posted the biggest gains with a rise of 5.33% to $35.76, after it announced its intention to sell its packaging and consumer unit, along with a number of other businesses.
IBM also climbed 3.02% to $101.46, closely followed by American Express which advanced 2.31% to $62.32, while Honeywell International ended the session up 2.06% to $53.99.
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