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Sunday 08th of November 2009
November 6, 2009    

British Airways gains nearly 7 percent on quarterly report

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by Elaine Frei
British Airways gains nearly 7 percent on quarterly report

Most European markets saw gains Friday, although in Paris the CAC-40 ended the session down 0.04 percent to 3,707.29.

The FTSE 100 added 0.33 percent to 5,142.72 in London, while the FTSE 250 was up 0.69 percent to 9,082.69 after early declines after new data from the United States showed that the unemployment rte there is at 10.2 percent, its highest level in over 26 years.

British Airways (LSE: BAY) led the 100 on promising results from its fiscal second quarter, adding 6.71 percent while residential property management group Grainger (LSE: GRI) was up 6.86 percent to lead the 250 and all London shares.

Royal Bank of Scotland (LSE: RBS) was the leader in a positive banking sector with a gain of 5.25 percent, while in the financial services sector money broker Tullett Prebon (LSE: TLPR) added 5.43 percent.

Business services group Rentokil Initial (LSE: RTO) turned in the worst performance on the 100 and among all London shares as it dropped 6.25 percent, while Old Mutual (LSE: OML) dropped 2.3 percent to lead decliners in a mixed insurance sector.

The Eurofirst 300 was up 0.19 percent to 992.42 while the Dax added 0.13 percent to 5,488.25 and the IBEX gained 0.27 percent to 11,580.6.

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region were higher to end the week, but indexes in Japan were mixed as the Nikkei 225 added 0.74 percent to 9,789.35 but the Topix index fell 0.11 percent to 874.01 and the Mothers market dropped 1.56 percent to 423.46.

Tokyo banks were lower on either worries that they might have to raise more cash or on profit taking, depending on which analysts’ view is accepted, and after the news that Sumitomo Trust and Banking Co Ltd (TYO: 8403) and Chuo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc (TYO: 8309) are discussing a merger that, if completed, would result in the creation of the biggest trust bank in Japan.

Chuo Mitsui was down 2.2 percent, while Sumitomo Trust fell 0.8 percent.

Among other banks, meanwhile, Mitsubishi UFJ (TYO: 8306) traded even after being lower in earlier trade while Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (TYO: 8316) was 0.3 percent lower and Mizuho Financial Group (TYO: 8411) dropped 1.1 percent.

The Shanghai Composite was up 0.28 percent to 3,164.04 while the Sensex added 0.59 percent to 16,158.28, the Taiex was 0.61 percent higher to 7,463.05, the Straits Times Index was up 1.1 percent to 2,658.21, the Kospi added 1.3 percent to 1,572 and the Hang Seng jumped 1.63 percent to 21,829.72.

In Australia, the Sydney Ordinaries added 1.89 percent to 4,604.4 while the S&P/ASX200 gained 1.91 percent to 4,594.

New York markets were higher at just before 12:30 p.m. local time after falling earlier on the bad news on employment from the Labor Department, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.19 percent to 10,025.23 while at the same time the Nasdaq Composite had added 0.26 percent to 2,110.75 and the S&P 500 was 0.25 percent higher to 1,069.3.

The gains came on broker upgrades as General Electric (NYSE: GE) received a boost to “outperform” from Bernstein Research, while Goldman Sachs upgraded two insurers, Travelers Companies (NYSE: TRV) and XL Capital (NYSE: X) from “neutral” to “buy”.

The price of gold was higher but crude oil prices in New York were down by more than $2 per barrel in late morning trade.

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