Vehicle giant General Motors (GM) propped up the Dow Jones early on Thursday after agreeing a deal analysts say will enable it to keep US bail-out cash.
The company has surged almost 10% after bosses persuaded thousands of United Auto Workers members to take buyouts. The move is consistent with GM's cost-cutting measures and will allow it to keep almost $13.4bn in US aid.
Two hours into trading, the Dow Jones was up almost 60 points, or 0.77%, to 7,809.
Meanwhile, Hewlett Packard, up 5%, and Intel Corporation continued to set the pace among the tech giants. Losers included Citigroup, down almost 3% to just $2.87.
In the UK, miners profited after Rio Tinto forecasted a rally in metal prices later in 2009. Eurasian Natural Resources, fresh from posting stronger-than-expected results yesterday, advanced more than 15% while Kazakhmys, up 7%, Fresnillo and Vedanta also profited.
Shortly before 3.15pm, the FTSE was just over 10 points up, or 0.26%, at 3,910.
Elsewhere, Barclays, Lloyds and Royal Bank of Scotland are all ahead again on hopes the latest US bail-out may bring some stability to the banking sector.
Barclays, off the back of upbeat notes issued by Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank, tops its peers with a 13% gain.IFAonline
Joined as head of strategy, multi asset, in June
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