The biggest FTSE 100 stocks have gained this morning, while rising mining stocks have seen the index add 20 points to 4,509.
Xstrata is the top gainer, up 15.5p to 650p after reports that coal stockpiles are down in South Africa.
HSBC, the biggest bank, is up 12.5p to 820.5p.
Shell is up 3.75p to 392.75p as oil prices gain on news foreign oil workers are being targeted in Saudi Arabia.
Vodafone is up 1p to 138p after officially launching its 3G services in Europe’s biggest mobile phone market Germany.
ICI is down 5p to 214.25p on higher input costs as the price of oil rises.
BAE Systems, Europe’s biggest defence contractor, is down 3.25p to 206.5p after newspaper reports the company has been caught out by investigations into £60m in bribes paid to clinch arms deals with countries such as Saudi Arabia.
The FTSE 250 index is up about 4 points to 6,214, led by oil exploration and services companies.
Premier Oil is up 13.25p to 513.25p.
Wood Group is up 3.5p to 145p.
Cairn Energy is up 26p tp 1,100p.
Shares closed up in New York yesterday, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average index up 88.43 points to 10,314.
Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index dropped 242.50 points to 11,761.79 ahead of the long weekend which continues through tomorrow, although Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 161.08 to 12,111.70 earlier today.IFAonline
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