London trading got off to a strong start Thursday, following positive results for Rio Tinto and rumours Aviva could be the target of a buyout bid.
The FTSE 100 was up 63.98 points (1.25%) to 5,195.97 after an hour's trade despite an impending announcement on how the EU will deal with Greece's huge national debt.
Rio Tinto's shares increased 4.4% to £32.77 after releasing an upbeat full-year financial statement. The firm believes commodity markets will recover through 2010.
Aviva shares were up 2.63% to 371.1p after rumours it could be a buyout target.
Smith & Nephew was the biggest gainer, advancing 5.21% to 666p after the firm reported a 22% rise in profits.
BT shares dropped 5.25% to 124.5p after revealing its pension fund deficit had hit £9bn.
The FTSE has followed trends in Asia, where Hong Kong's Hang Seng index jumped 1.85% to reclaim 20,000 overnight. It closed at 20,290.69.
US markets closed slightly down after Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke announced his plans for post-recession monetary policy.
The Dow Jones fell 0.2% to 10,038.38 after Bernanke revealed plans to tighten credit laws once the economy has recovered.
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Via The Exchange
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