- Global markets recovered overnight, with the exception of Japan's Nikkei 225, thanks to encouraging comments from National Economic Council director Larry Kudlow.

Kudlow said on Wednesday evening that Chinese tariffs might not be enforced, helping to calm anxious investors over a potential trade war.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Nasdaq closed 1.4% higher at 7,042 and the S&P 500 was up 1.1% at 2,644. European indices were also a sea of green, helping the FTSE 100 rise 1.2% to 7,119 around midday.

Miners were mainly behind the positive momentum, led by Glencore's (GLEN) 4.1% rise to 358.1p.

Peers Anglo American (AAL) gained 3.5% to £16.44 and Antofagasta (ANTO) strengthened 3.1% to 929.8p.

Brent crude oil nudged 0.2% lower to $67.87 per barrel. Copper climbed 1.4% to $3.05 per pound and gold retreated 0.8% to $1,325 per ounce.


Casinos operator Rank (RNK) issued a profit warning as weaker consumer confidence and cold weather kept visitors away, triggering a 14.6% fall in its shares to 182.4p.

IT security firm Sophos (SOPH) revealed billings growth for the year to March will hit the top end of the previous guided 20% to 22% range, sparking the shares 16% to 482.7p.

There was also good news from Electrocomponents (ECM) after it beat full year pre-tax profit expectations, partially driven by strong sales growth. The stock jumped 3.1% to 596.6p.

Specialist healthcare company BTG (BTG) slumped 12.5% to 577.5p on news it will recognise a £150m impairment charge for severe emphysema treatment PneumRx Coil on the back of disappointing sales.


Logistics business Wincanton (WIN) enjoyed a strong performance over the Christmas period and unveiled recent contract wins from Wickes and Ikea, helping the shares accelerate 2.1% to 215.5p.

Investors overlooked Walker Greenbank's (WGB) robust annual results, focusing on a warnings that profitability will beat last year's but will be 'below current board expectations.' Shares in the luxury interior furnishings company fell 3.4% to 129p.

Airea (AIEA) said it has not received a takeover approach from James Halstead (JHD) or discussed any potential offer. James Halstead reported it was 'at the very early stages' of evaluating an offer. Investors were excited by a potential takeover as shares in Airea soared 30.4% to 66.1p.

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