- FTSE indices opened higher on a string of resources-related and retail stocks. Wall St and Asian markets were mixed. Shortly after the open, the FTSE 100 was up 10.99 points, or 0.16%, to 6682.96, and the FTSE 250 was up 54.49 points, or 0.35%, to 15,703.1.

United Utilities (UU.) led the blue chips, up 1.89% to 903.25p. Sector chums National Grid (NG.) and SSE (SSE) followed. Oily stocks were led by Cairn Energy (CNE), up 1.38% to 184.2p, and Tullow Oil (TLW), up 1.04% to 463.45p.

Several miners enjoyed a rise, too. Randgold Resources (RRS) was in sector pole position with a 1.83% surge to 4398p, tail-gated by Lonmin (LMI) and Fresnillo (FRES). Others, however, were lower. Rio Tinto (RIO), Glencore (GLEN) and Anglo American (AAL) edged down.

Among retailers in the shop window were Burberry (BRBY), up 0.94% to 1564.5p, and Next (NXT). Supermarkets Morrisons (MRW), Marks & Spencer (MKS) and Tesco (TSCO) made some minor gains, as did Sainsbury (SBRY).

Balfour Beatty's (BBY) rose 2.44% to 159.6p as its order book stood at £11.7bn at end-Q3. UK Mail (UKM) added 0.19% to 397.5p on more than halving its H1 pretax profit to £4.9m. British Land (BLND), up 1.19% to 745.75p, booked an H1 pretax profit of £1.04bn, from £422m, as its EPRA NAV per share rose 11.8% to 769p.


Urals Energy (UEN), up 41.18% to 6p, has received notification from the Moscow Court of Cassation that it has won its appeal case against another court ruling to grant Russian court jurisdiction in respect of the claim by UEN Cyprus Ltd to recover the sum of $41.7m from it.

MCB Finance Group (MCRB) has received a preliminary approach relating to a possible cash offer from International Personal Finance (IPF). IPF has till Dec. 16 to confirm an intention to make an offer, or not. MCB also booked a nine-month pretax profit of 2.4m euros, from a loss of 2.1m euros a year ago. MCB's shares soared 20.95% to 63.5p.

Tower Resources (TRP), down 17.24% to 0.6p, noted a temporary injunction was preventing work at the planned Badada-1 well, onshore Kenya. It has a 15% working interest in the well. The injunction was expected to be revoked, allowing spudding in early January 2015.

Amiad Water Systems (AFS) said continuing uncertainty surrounding some contracts will see it report revenue 2%-6% below market views, in the range of $118m-$122m, against $118.9m in 2013. It would have a 'greater impact on net profit.' Its shares fell 14.73% to 165p.


Paddy Power (PAP) now expects mid- to high-teens percentage growth in earnings per share for the full year. In H2 strong revenue growth has continued in all its businesses. Its shares rose 0.72% to 61.52p.

Quindell (QPP) said chairman Robert Terry has resigned from the board of directors with immediate effect. It said two other directors were also leaving the company. QPP rose 1.14% to 56.13p.

Chamberlin (CMH), up 11.52% to 106.5p, has secured a major new contract worth 26.0m euros over an eight-year term with a leading European automotive industry components and parts supplier.

Silence Therapeutics (SLN), up 2.52% to 203.5p, said study data on the first-in-human trial of the use of its Atu027 RNAi (RNA interference) technology in patients with advanced solid tumours found it was well tolerated and safe.

Halma (HLMA) said H1 adjusted pretax profit rose 6% to a record £69.0m, even after an adverse forex impact of 5%. Revenue was up, helped by acquisition and disposal activity. Its shares rose 2.05% to 646.5p. Story provided by