LONDON -- Despite an early improvement on the strong performance on Wall Street Wednesday, the FTSE 100 closed down 26.5 points, or 0.4%, at 6,256.5. Meanwhile, the Techmark index told a different story as it managed to close up 94.5 points, or 3.0%, at 3,626.3.
Tech stocks resilience was due in part to various deals within the sector, including a tie-up between
, which pushed the former 421p higher, or 17.3%, to
rose 306p, or 5.5%, to
was up 417p, or 13.5%, to
In the financial sector,
rose 25p, or 1.5%, to
17.04 following a positive annual meeting, but
Bank of Scotland
dipped 57p, or 8.9%, to 587 after disappointing full-year results.
Media stocks featured
, up 66p, or 6.9%, at
10.21 after an encouraging trading update, and
attracted further speculative demand on hopes of a link with
, and rose 48p, or 5.9%, to
12.41. But the rest of the sector failed to perform, with
down 15p, or 0.7%, at
18p lower, or 1.9%, at
down 74p, or 4.5%, to
Pharmaceutical stocks encountered profit taking in the wake of recent gains.
lost 99p, or 4.9%, to
19.33 and merger partner
tumbled 46p, or 5.2%, to 845.
It was a different story on the Continent, where bourses managed to maintain this morning's strength. The
in Frankfurt closed up 108.04, or 1.5%, at 7,388.55 and the
in Paris ended up 70.58, or 1.1%, at 6,390.87.
The fall in the euro against major currencies is helping the share prices of exporters. The euro fell to an all-time low of 91.65 cents to the dollar on Tuesday, but on Wednesday it had recovered to trade at 92.19 cents to the dollar.
The major gainers in Frankfurt were tech and telecom shares, including
, up 11.49 euros, or 8.3%, at 149.79 ($137.81),
, up 34.30 euros, or 5.7%, to 636.00, and
, up 2.46 euros, or 4.3%, to 55.80.
this morning announced that it has signed a contact to supply China's
Jilin Mobile Communications
with WAP solutions and its shares closed up 2.30 euros, or 4.3%, at 55.80.