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Sunday 07th of June 2009
September 19, 2008

British Energy loses big, BT Group wins big in London

by Elaine Frei
British Energy loses, big, BT Group wins big in London

The FTSE 100 had its biggest percentage gain in history Friday as European markets soared on plans to rebuild confidence in the markets by the US and UK governments and others.

In London, the FTSE 100 added 8.84 percent to 5,311.3 while the FTSE 250 gained 7.75 percent to 8,982.7.

The 100’s gain came on big losses as well as big gains as British Energy (LSE: BGY) led decliners with a drop of 29.88 percent but telecommunications company BT Group (LSE: BT.A; NYSE: BT) led gainers on the index as it added 41.6 percent.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was up 8.26 percent to 1,151.49 as the Dax added 5.56 percent to 6,189.53, the IBEX was 8.71 percent higher to 11,557.9 and the CAC-40 outdid even the FTSE 100 in terms of percentage gain as the Paris index gained 9.27 percent to 4,324.87.

Equities markets in the Asia-Pacific region soared Friday after big declines earlier in the week.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 was up 3.76 percent to 11,920.86 while the Topix index added 4.69 percent to 1,149.12 and the Mothers market gained 1.71 percent to 447.79.

In Australia, the Sydney Ordinaries added 4.06 percent to 4,840.7 and the S&P/ASX200 was up 4.27 percent to 4,804.1 while South Korea’s Kospi gained 4.55 percent to 1,455.78, India’s Sensex was 5.46 percent higher to 14,042.32, the Straits Times Index was up 5.78 percent to 2,559.07 and the Taiex gained 5.82 percent to 5,970.38.

Meanwhile, the Shanghai Composite added 9.46 percent to 2,075.09 while the Hang Seng gained 9.61 percent to 19,327.73, a jump of 1,695 points on the session.

Wall Street was also pleased by the initiatives outlined by the US government for bringing back confidence in the markets.

At around 1 p.m. in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 3.78 percent to 11,436.07 while the Nasdaq Composite was 3.24 percent higher to 2,270.37 and the S&P 500 had gained 4.17 percent to 1,256.81.

Crude oil prices were sharply higher on the session, while grains and base metals prices were up but precious metals prices were mixed.

The dollar weakened against a wide variety of emerging markets currencies while the yen weakened as investors returned to purchases of higher-yielding currencies.

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