- UK stocks opened higher on Monday, amid broader gains in Europe and Asia, as investors held out hope for more central bank stimulus following dovish comments on Friday by US Fed chair Jerome Powell.

At 0849, the benchmark FTSE 100 index was up 36.11 points, or 0.5%, at 7.318.45.

Lloyds dropped 1.9% to 49.11p after the bank suspended a share buyback programme, owing to a spike in claims for mis-sold payment protection insurance, or PPI, ahead of a 29 August complaints deadline.

The lender said it now expected to make a charge for PPI claims of £1.2bn-to-£1.8bn for the third quarter.

Associated British Foods fell 3.4% to 2273p, as it announced that same-store sales at its Primark budget department store chain were expected to fall 2%, amid a tough UK trading environment marred by Brexit uncertainty.

Consumer goods group UP Global Sourcing, which trades as Ultimate Products, was having a better morning, advancing 4.6% to 74.6p as it forecast a 51% jump in annual adjusted profit.

Private equity investor HG Capital Trust rallied 5.9% to 236.71p after it booked a total return of 14% in the first half of its financial year.

Technology-focused adviser and investor MXC Capital gained 11% to 105.92p, having forecast a return to the black, while also announcing a proposed demerger of its transactional businesses.

Communications software provider Cerillion jumped 10% to 176p on the back of news that it had won a contract worth £3.7m from a telecoms provider in Asia.

Aviation company Stobart gained 1.4% to 140.88p, as it announced its energy division's management would share an award of £5.3m after the unit's equity valuation more than doubled in three years.

Oil explorer Petro Matad rallied 14% to 8.7p after it announced that a new well in Mongolia had presented 'encouraging' results and would be subject to a testing programme.

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