LONDON -- The
higher close Tuesday prompted a firmer start to proceedings in London Wednesday morning. Throw in some positive trading statements, and the market may even break its three-day losing streak.
began 23 points higher and has since moved further ahead. By midsession, the index stood 122.5 points higher at 6137.2.
A penny on the
share price equals nearly 3 points on the Footsie, so with Vodafone up 16.5p to 360.5, that's nearly 50 points of the index's rise accounted for.
This morning's star performer was software firm
, which rose 198p to 24.80 pounds after revealing a 63% leap in interim profits and a 30% dividend increase.
gained 787p to 135.25 pounds after announcing revenue of 23.3 million pounds and a security products deal with
, but the profit-takers moved in and by midsession the price was down 87p on balance to 126.50 pounds.
index of leading tech stocks was up 114.3 points, or 2.4%, to 4971.1.
brought some cheer to the banking sector with a gain of 37p to 748. The market liked both annual profits of 507 million pounds and the company's statement that the recovery in Asia will support expansion and restore profit growth.
initially caught the mood and rose 29p to 15.05 pounds, but has since slipped back to stand just 9 higher on balance at 14.85 pounds.
was up 44p to 983 after the market got more excited about the insurer's plan to float a minority stake in
, its online banking arm, than annual profits of 776 million pounds, which were in line with expectations.
The Continent's major stock markets were solidly in the black, in a game of catch-up with Wall Street's late rally Tuesday. The
in Frankfurt was up 129.01 to 7736.95, and the
in Paris was 73.86 higher at 6037.17.
Telcos around the Continent were higher, with
up 1.96 euros to 87.55; Spain's
in Madrid was up 0.25 euros to 28.35; and
was 2.30 euros higher to 162.90.
Germany's blue-chip tech stocks were also doing better.
soared 9.35 euros to 174.45,
moved 0.90 euros higher to 147.90, and software maker
was up 5.30 euros to 868.80 euros.
Shares of German utilities fell prey to profit-taking after surging more than 10% Tuesday over possibilities they could offer broadband voice and data services along power lines.
was down 0.50 euros to 52 and
fell 0.58 to 20.52.
fell 2.10 euros to 42.90 after releasing disappointing numbers after the bell Tuesday.