LONDON -- The FTSE 100 spent most of the day in the red but managed to claw back most of the losses after a bold opening by the Nasdaq, a rise in oil shares and a decision by the Bank of England to keep interest rates steady.
The FTSE 100 closed down just 6 points at 6689, while the
finished down 4 points at 4025.
The day got off to a bad start with the engineering and computer software group
announcing a profit warning. This infuriated investors since it was only a few months ago that Invensys decided to buy the ailing Dutch software company
for what was considered a much-too-generous price.
Invensys shares plunged 93.25 pence, or 35.7% to 169.75 ($2.44), with 190 million shares changing hands by midafternoon. More than
3 billion was wiped off the market capitalisation in the process.
In the telecom sector,
recovered from an intraday low of 822p, but still ended down 17p, or 2.0%, to 833p. It was a similar story for
Cable & Wireless
, which saw its shares slip 64p, or 5.0%, to
managed to close up 9p, or 3.2%, at 291.
Oil stocks followed the crude higher.
reached a record high of 682p, before slipping back to stand at 661.5, a gain of 4.5p or 0.7%.
closed up 10p, or 1.7%, to 616.
On the Continent, the
in Paris closed up 37 points, or 0.5%, to 6834. Late in the German session, the
in Frankfurt was up 46 points, or 0.6%, at 7379 and the Neuer Markt's tech-heavy
index was up 8 points to 5705.
was down 3.50 euros, or 2.4%, at 140.00 ($121.80) despite reporting solid first-half results after the market close Wednesday.
was also lower even though its proposed merger with
cleared Justice Department scrutiny. The shares were down 0.78 euro, or 1.7%, at 45.78.