Good results from chemicals group ICI and an upbeat trading statement from Rentokil has given the FTSE 100 an early boost, with gains of 27.1 points, or 0.51%, to 5,385.7.
Tate and Lyle is currently one of the biggest movers this morning with a rise of 27p, or 5.73% to 498p. Rentokil is also high in the leader board with gains of 7.75p, or 5.17%, to 157.75p.
After announcing results that beat forecasts, ICI is also riding high with an advance of 14.75p, or 5.02%, to 308.75p, to hit its highest level since July 2002.
Elsewhere, Unilever has done little to impress investors as shares in the maker of Dove soap and Hellmann's mayonnaise have fallen 16.5p, or 2.84%, to 564p, after traders said they were disappointed by margins and volume growth at the group.
Meanwhile engine maker Rolls Royce has also slipped slightly, down 0.2% to 371.5p, after a downgrade from Merrill Lynch.
In Japan the stock exchanges have been closed for a national holiday. They closed on Wednesday, up 26.92 points, or 0.2%, at 13,894.78.
In the US, stocks climbed to four-week highs as the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 65.96 points, or 0.6%, to 10,472.73, at its close last night as anticipation of a year-end rally spurred demand for some of the market's worst performers.
Media companies helped set the pace, as stocks gained after Time Warner reported an 80% surge in quarterly profit, and four cable television companies, including Comcast, joined with Sprint Nextel in a cell phone venture.
Time Warner rose $0.33, to $17.90, after the world's largest media company attributed its jump in third-quarter profit to increased sales in its cable television unit.
Meanwhile, Comcast, the world's biggest cable TV provider, increased $0.70, to $28.80, while Sprint Nextel gained $0.88, to $24.73.
Elsewhere Symantec, the world's biggest maker of antivirus software, fell $4.63, to $19.37, after issuing a profit forecast that fell short of Wall Street estimates.
Cigna, the fourth-largest US health insurance provider, also tumbled $7.18, to $110.37, after the company said third-quarter profit fell 16%.IFAonline
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