FTSE 100 up as Britain leaves recession

The blue chip index was up in early trading, as the economy expanded by one per cent in the three months to September, the strongest quarterly growth in five years.

Companies announcing results also helped to buoy the FTSE 100, such as consumer giant Unilever, which added 3.36 per cent as it announced rising sales.

Blue chips Anglo American, Kazakhmys, AstraZeneca and WPP were also among the companies announcing results today.

On the FTSE All-Share, department store Debenhams rose almost seven per cent as it posted a jump in its annual profits.

Energy firm Salamander soared 4.38 per cent, following a positive update for its operations in Thailand.

Enertainment group Bwin.Party rose four per cent on news that it has formed an exclusive partnership with social games provider Zynga.

Gold miner Centamin rose almost three per cent in early deals. Yesterday Investec downgraded the stock from buy to hold.

With regards to the losers, Bloomsbury Publishing brought up the rear, losing 6.14 per cent in early trading. This morning it announced a drop in first half profits.

Self storage firm Safestore fell 6.1 per cent.

Advertising giant WPP was off by almost three per cent in early deals, as it cut its full-year sales growth targets.

Miner Gem Diamonds fell 2.62 per cent in early deals, while private equity investment company Dunedin Enterprise dropped 2.17 per cent.

UK financials had a good morning. HSBC was up 1.34 per cent, RBS rose 1.75 per cent, Barclays rose 1.58 per cent and Lloyds Banking Group added 0.39 per cent.

In Asia, the Nikkei closed 1.13 per cent up at a four-week closing high. In the US, the Dow Jones closed 0.19 per cent down.