(Reuters) – Britain’s top share index rose on Thursday with support from heavyweight oil stocks and miners as investors cheered the U.S. Federal Reserve halting policy tightening, but gains were capped by some blue-chip names trading ex-dividend.
The FTSE 100 was up 0.3 percent after snapping a seven-day winning streak on Wednesday, outperforming its European peers. The mid-cap FTSE 250 was down 0.4 percent by 0822 GMT, ahead of a Bank of England policy decision.
The Fed on Wednesday abandoned projections for any interest rate hikes this year amid signs of an economic slowdown, and said it would end its balance sheet reduction in September, which softened the dollar.
Miners derived gains from a weak dollar and on hopes of tighter supply after Vale said it would halt production at a Brazilian mine, while oil majors rose as prices surged amid OPEC supply cuts and U.S. sanctions against Iran and Venezuela [O/R]
Brexit jitters lingered with investors still awaiting clarity on the much-mired exit process after the European Union said it would only grant a conditional Brexit extension to Prime Minister Theresa May.
Clothing chain Next underperformed the main bourse as it fell 3.1 percent after its annual profit fell and it guided to another decline in the 2019-20 year.
Royal Bank of Scotland and Phoenix Group shed more than 2.5 percent on the FTSE 100 while mid-cap housebuilder Crest Nicholson slumped 8 percent as the stocks traded ex-dividend.
Results drove some steep moves as precision engineering group Renishaw tanked 13.5 percent after cutting annual profit forecast and Ted Baker gave up 5.9 percent after its first drop in annual pretax profit since the financial crisis.
Online financial trading firm IG Group slipped 8.8 percent after its quarterly net trading revenue fell as its UK and European units took a hit from stricter regulations.
(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi and Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Chopra)