- The FTSE 100 traded 0.9% higher at 7,322 at 12.30pm on Friday, tracking gains in Asia and elsewhere in Europe, as investors warmed to the prospect of interest rate cuts to stave off global growth fears.

A stronger oil price also gave support to the blue chip index with Royal Dutch Shell trading 0.7% higher at £25.33 and BP advancing 1.2% to 550p.

Iron ore miner Ferrexpo jumped 8.2% on announcing that it expected first-half earnings to increase 'materially' year-on-year, driven by higher pricing, production and sales volumes.

Engineering company Smiths gained 0.9% as it announced that it had appointed JehanZeb Noor as chief executive of its medical division. The former Amcor Flexibles executive takes up the role on 1 July and will oversee the separation of the business, expected to be completed during the first half of calendar 2020.

Pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline pushed 0.2% higher as the Federal Drug Administration approved two new methods for administering the company's asthma treatment.

Minimally invasive surgery technology company Surgical Innovations plunged 38% on warning that its annual profit would fall, as Brexit uncertainty and funding pressures at the NHS weighed on sales.

Concrete levelling group Somero Enterprises issued a profit warning, saying rain in the US had delayed construction projects. Its shares fell 22% to 275.32p.

Fantasy figures retailer Games Workshop was a bright spot, rallying 5.8% to £47.02 after it guided for a higher annual profit, buoyed by growing sales.

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