- FTSE indices sped ahead on the back of resources-related stocks, with retail- and financial-sector players also contributing. Near noon, the FTSE 100 was up 33.22 points, or 0.5%, to 6705.19, and the FTSE 250 was up 27.8 points, or 0.18%, to 15,676.4.

Lonmin (LMI), up 4.12% to 188.15p, led the miners, followed by Randgold Resources (RRS) and Fresnillo (FRES). Tullow Oil (TLW) was to the fore of oily stocks, up 3.67% to 475.55p. Cairn Energy (CNE), up 2.09% to 185.5p, followed. Major-leaguers BP (BP.) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDSA) also gained, as did multiple utility outfits.

Among retailers in the shop window was supermarket Morrisons (MRW), up 1.27% to 183.8p, with Tesco (TSCO) and Sainsbury (SBRY) a jot behind. Burberry (BRBY), up 2.03% to 1581.5p, and Next (NXT), up 1.02% to 6682.5p, also gained ahead of the pre-Christmas retail rush.

Balfour Beatty (BBY) rose 5.13% to 163.86p as its order book stood at £11.7bn at end-Q3. British Land (BLND), up 0.92% to 743.75p, booked an H1 pretax profit of £1.04bn, from £422m, as its EPRA NAV per share rose 11.8% to 769p.

UK Mail (UKM) added 1.45% to 402.5p on more than halving its H1 pretax profit to £4.9m. Royal Mail (RMG) gained 2.59% to 479.8p ahead of its interim results, slated for Nov. 19. To the downside, several insurers lost ground, as did Reckitt Benckiser (RB.) and SABMiller (SAB).


Urals Energy (UEN), up 50.12% to 6.38p, has received notification from a Moscow court 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) fell 10.34% to 0.65p on receiving formal notice from the High Court of Kenya of a temporary injunction stopping work on the Badada-1 well in which it has a 15% stake. Meantime, Surgical Innovations (SUN) rose 25.38% to 1.63p after raising £1.5m through a share sale. The funds will support its restructuring following several profit warnings.

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 18.09% to 158.5p.


German economic sentiment rose to a four-month high in November. ZEW Centre for Economic Research's index of German economic sentiment rose 15.1 points to 11.5 this month.


Quindell (QPP) said founder and chairman Robert Terry has resigned from the board with immediate effect. It said two other directors were also leaving the company. QPP rose 1.35% to 56.25p. Chamberlin (CMH), up 14.14% to 109p, has won a major new contract worth 26.0m euros over an eight-year term with a 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 3.08% to 653p. Order intake continued to be ahead on the year.

Set-top box maker Pace (PIC) shoots to near the top of the All-Share leader board, the shares up 3.15% at 342.25p, as the pay TV and broadband services group says it expects a record fourth quarter with profits and margins in the third quarter ahead of expectations.

Virgin Money (VM.) nudged up 0.26% to 284.25p as unconditional trading begain. The company was forced to slash its valuation to get the IPO away. Elsewhere, Easyjet (EZJ) lost 0.81% to 1531.5p as profit-takers swooped following the group's record FY profits of £581m.

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