Britain's leading share index has fallen back into the red after enjoying modest gains in early Thursday trading.
In a turbulent morning, the FTSE 100 has fallen to 5,284.53, down 18.34 points or 0.35%.
It headed higher at the start of trade, touching 5,336 for a gain of 34 points, following overnight rises on Wall Street and Japan.
Miners lead the way as yesterday's laggards set the early pace, with Anglo American, Rio Tinto, Fresnillo, Xstrata, Lonmin and Randgold all higher. ARM Holdings, the technology firm, leads the pack with a 1.9% jump.
Utilities find themselves out of favour. United Utilities, Severn Trent and Pennon are all down.
In Europe stocks have opened lower. The French CAC is down 16.48 points, or 0.45%, to 3,631.45. Germany's Dax is also lower, dropping 38.8 points, or 0.63%, in early trading to 6,147.51 points.
In the US, shares crept into positive territory after investors found some good news in retail earnings reports.
The Dow Jones index fluctuated throughout the trading session, eventually ending 9.69 points up at 10,415.54. The broader S&P 500 gained 0.15%
Fertiliser firm Potash rose 3.2% as BHP Billiton went hostile with a £39bn bid.
Japanese shares rose 1.3% overnight, on reports the Bank of Japan would take further easing measures to cap the strong yen. The Nikkei 225 index closed up 122.14 points at 9,362.68, helped by strong gains from automakers.
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