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FTSE 100 gains as European markets recover despite Wall Street slump

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The FTSE recovered some ground from Monday’s bruising session as it benefited from strength among banking and commodity stocks.

Markets across Europe were in resilient form as traders started buying again, with banks including Standard Chartered, Lloyds and NatWest among those to claw back some losses.

London’s top flight ended the day 74.31 points, or 1.02%, higher at 7,371.46 points.

Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG, said: “Despite some wobbles throughout the day the FTSE 100 has managed to hold on to most of yesterday’s rebound.

“Signs of a recovery in metals and oil have boosted the relevant sectors in the index, while higher yields have done their bit to lift bank stocks once again.

“It is far too early to say if this European outperformance versus the US is here to stay – we have had plenty of false dawns in recent years – but if the shift away from tech and other growth names really gets going a different market environment could be upon us, one where US outperformance is not a given.”

Across the channel, both of the other main indexes also finished in the green but had more tempered rebounds after less steep drops on Monday.

The German Dax increased by 0.75% and the French Cac rose by 0.74%.

In the US, Wall Street meanwhile opened sharply lower as the Nasdaq 100 led the drop, with confidence in tech stocks once again sliding.

Meanwhile, sterling made modest gains on the dollar as trading in London stabilised.

The pound nudged 0.05% higher against the US dollar to 1.349, and dropped 0.05% against the euro to 1.195.

In company news, Unilever finished marginally lower after announcing a group-wide overhaul which included plans to cut about 1,500 jobs across the global business.

The Marmite-to-Dove soap-maker is planning to axe about 15% of senior management roles and 5% of more junior management roles after Bloomberg reported cuts were afoot.

Shares dipped by 7.5p to 3,936p as the move failed to completely allay investor concerns.

Royal Mail made gains after confirming its own restructuring, which is set to hit 700 management jobs.

Shares in the delivery giant closed 5.7p higher at 442.3p after bosses confirmed the plans were designed to help reduce Royal Mail’s costs by about £40 million a year.

Elsewhere, recruiter Staffline jumped in value after its underlying profits more than doubled to £10 million for the past year after hiring demand surged following lockdowns.

Shares in the company were 4.5p higher at 60p at the end of the session.

The price of oil also saw its own rebound despite the International Monetary Fund (IMF) downgrading its global growth forecasts due to Omicron.

Brent crude increased by 1.67% to 87.71 dollars per barrel when the London markets closed.

The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were Ocado, up 69p to 1,427.5p, Standard Chartered, up 24.3p to 512.2p, Abrdn, up 10.2p to 239.4p, BP, up 15.55p to 379.65p, and Shell B, up 64.2p to 336.6p.

The biggest fallers on the FTSE 100 were Auto Trader, down 24p to 635.4p, United Utilities, down 17p to 635.2p, Aveva, down 65p to 2,750p, Evraz, down 10p to 487p, and Barratt Developments, down 10p to 604.2p.

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