An anticipated base rate cut and positive profits news from the Royal Bank of Scotland have seen the FTSE climb and the bank soar to the top of the index winners list.
The FTSE 100 has climbed 23.9 points, or 0.37%, to 6,517.7. RBS has jumped 30.75p, or 6.6%, to 496.5p.
It is closely followed by HBOS, up 31p to 830.5p, and homebuilding firm Taylor Wimpey, which has climbed 7p, or 3.44%, to 210.25p.
However, Shire, down 23p, or 1.93%, to £11.69, and BSkyB, down 10p to 600p, have suffered early morning losses.
In the US, the Dow Jones climbed 196 points, or 1.48%, to 13,444.96 at the close of trading on Wednesday.
American International and Microsoft led the winners table, with only McDonalds suffering losses.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 Stock Average advanced 265.20, or 1.7%, to 15,874.08 at the close of trading in Tokyo.
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