The FTSE 100 closed marginally higher, in line with other European bourses. BT touched higher on a favourable outcome regarding its Openreach service, negating the slip in housebuilders and grocers and BP. Mining stocks also lent support to the primary and secondary indices, despite the FTSE 250 off slightly closing -0.13%.
BP(-2.1%) traded lower after reporting a $2.25bn net loss in the second quarter of 2016, in the first of a series of earnings disclosures from large Western oil this week.
BT traded +3.2%, as investors saw a decision taken by Ofcom regarding its Openreach platform to be beneficial to the telecommunications provider. Ofcom decided that Openreach did not need to restructured independently of BT Group, avoiding costly restructuring and increasing the possibility of increased wholesale prices based on the regulator’s wish for an improved service. Bt’s rivals traded lower on the news, given BT now have scope to implement cost increases for access to the Openreach network.
Virgin Money climbed higher(+8.7%) as the bank brushed off Brexit worries reporting a 70% jump in 1H pretax profit. The FTSE 250 lender came in at £93.7m, up from £55.0m a year earlier. Underlying pretax profit, stripping out one-offs, grew to £101.8m up 53% from £66.4m. Virgin reported that it was in a strong position to deal with any Brexit-related uncertainty and has continued to see robust customer demand since the referendum result was announced.
At the close European indices were up as the FTSE 100 closed +0.21%, the Cac 40 +0.15% and the Dax 30 +0.49%.