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UK Equities
Oil majors pump up FTSE 100
From the Financial Times of Mon, 22 Dec 2014 09:16:55 GMT

Oil majors crowded at the top of a resurgent FTSE 100 on Monday, as crude prices held above $60 a barrel after Saudi Arabia’s oil minister repeated his assertion that the oil market would improve.

Ali al-Naimi made the comments at an energy conference in Abu Dhabi. While he also repeated his nation’s policy of keeping oil output steady in the face of the near-50 per cent slide im crude prices since June, Brent crude rallied over the weekend and rose 1.2 per cent at $62.55 on Monday.

The four biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were all oil companies. Royal Dutch Shell rose 2.9 per cent to £22.84. BP added 2.4 per cent to 422.7p. Tullow Oil rose 2.2 per cent to 433p. BG was up 1 per cent at 910.1p.

The heavily weighted sector made the biggest overall contribution to the main London index’s initial gain of 0.8 per cent, which took it to 6,597.36, a rise of 52 points.

Financial stocks were also in demand as sentiment across global markets remained positive, and traders moved toward the Christmas break and the year-end in the mood to take on risk.

“The festive cheer that had been sorely lacking in the market in recent weeks does appear to be embedding itself — the year could still end with a flourish, ” said Tony Cross, market analyst at Trustnet Direct.

HSBC led the banks, up 1 per cent at 613.48p. Royal Bank of Scotland gained 0.9 per cent to 392.6p.

The gains were also broad, with only nine of the FTSE 100’s constituent stocks falling. Randgold Resources fell furthest, as its strong rally over the previous session left it looking ripe for profit-taking. The stock lost 2.5 per cent at £43.19.

Shares in Kingfisher rose 1.1 per cent after the DIY retailer announced it was selling most of its underperforming Chinese retail chain under its B&Q banner.



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