- Positive momentum in Banking stocks helped the FTSE erase an earlier 20-point loss and finish at a high for the day up 34 points or 0.5% at 7,270.


Banks were the leading gainers on the FTSE with Barclays gaining 5.1% to 148p after increasing its provisions for payment protection insurance (PPI) mis-selling by slightly less than the market expected.

Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group followed suit, gaining 2.1% and 4.2% respectively to 197p and 52.3p.

JD Sports was the top FTSE performer adding 8.4% to 686p after its first-half operating profits rose and it forecast a full-year performance at the top end of its guidance range, despite adjusting for new accounting standards.

Like-for-like sales in the sportswear retailer's UK and Ireland operations rose by more than 10%. They climbed 5% at its relatively new US business.

International Consolidated Airlines, owner of British Airways, rose 4.2% to 441p despite a second day of strikes at UK airports by the pilots' union.

Highly-rated software stocks were among the big losers with Aveva falling 5% to £34.74 and Sage falling 4% to 664p respectively.

Other big blue-chip fallers included London Stock Exchange, down 4% to £67.99 and Experian down 3.9% to £24.75.


Cairn Energy gained 10.2% to 195p as it swung to a first-half profit and upgraded its annual production guidance.

Micro-cap disease and allergy test-kit supplier Omega Diagnostics rallied 4.4% to 11.75p on announcing that it had received a second purchase order from a new partner in China.

Recycling company Renewi added 0.9% to 30.9p after it agreed to sell its Reym industrial cleaning business to the Rremondis for €64m (£57m) including debt.

Video games developer Team17 also added 0.9% to 305p after it almost doubled revenues thanks to new games releases including 'Genesis Alpha One' and 'My Time at Portia'.

Trust and fund administration service provider Sanne fell 7.3% to 530p as it booked a 50% fall in first-half profit owing to one-off expenses and a contraction in margins.

Bovis Homes fell 3.7% to £10.20 after it announced that it was mulling a bid for smaller rival Galliford Try's housing business. Galliford Try jumped 8% to 664p.

Online gambling operator 888 sank 7.8% to 156p on reporting a sharp fall in profit, which it pinned on higher costs and lower poker and business-to-business revenue.

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