UK stocks rise ahead of U.S. inflation datawritten by Bella Palmer
The FTSE 100 index advanced 0.1 per cent, while the broader European STOXX 600 index added 0.6 per cent
UK stocks edged higher on Thursday ahead of key U.S. inflation figures but lagged a broader rally in Europe after heavyweights like HSBC and Rio Tinto weighed as their shares traded without the entitlement of dividends.
The FTSE 100 index advanced 0.1 per cent by 0836 GMT, while the broader European STOXX 600 index added 0.6 per cent.
The blue-chip British stocks gauge was still on track to extend gains after its biggest daily gain in three weeks on Wednesday.
Euro zone blue-chips have added 15 per cent so far this year, whereas the UK's FTSE 100 has added only around 2 per cent.
We know the FTSE has lagged in general, said Daniela Hathorn, senior market analyst at Capital.com.
She said that it shows that at the end of the day, investors are still worried about the state of the economy and we are not in the period of expansion now.
Banks stocks - Barclays, Natwest Group, HSBC Holdings and Standard Chartered - were down between 0.2 per cent and 1.5 per cent as they traded ex-dividend.
Miner stocks dropped 0.4 per cent, leading sectoral losses as Rio Tinto's more-than-2.5 per cent decline weighed. A 1.3 per cent increase in shares of Antofagasta, coming after the Chilean miner increased shareholder returns, capped declines.
Anglo-Swedish drugmaker AstraZeneca was 1.1 per cent lower while energy company BP was down 0.1 per cent, also on ex-dividend.
Shares of Persimmon advanced more than 4.3 per cent, reaching the top of the FTSE 100, after the UK housebuilder said it expects annual profit to be in line with its expectations.
A much-awaited U.S. inflation report due later in the day will help investors gauge the trajectory of the Fed's policy path.
Spirax-Sarco shares declined 6.1 per cent to the bottom of the FTSE 100, after it reported first-half profit and revenue below expectations. British gambling company Entain declined 0.8 per cent.
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