FTSE 100 smashes through 6,200 barrier

The blue chip index edged up in early trades, and smashed through the 6,200 barrier although disappointing results from US technology behemoth Apple weighed on sentiment.

The company posted record profits last night, but warned of lower revenue growth in the coming months, which sent its shares down more than 10 per cent in after-hours trading.

Chipmaker ARM Holdings, which is an Apple supplier, was the biggest faller on the FTSE 100 this morning, falling 0.82 per cent.

Other large-cap losers included miners Vedanta and Eurasian Natural Resources, which fell 0.93 per cent and 0.88 per cent respectively.

On the wider index, pub group Punch Taverns was off by more than 6.5 per cent. This morning it was announced that its chief executive Roger Whiteside is off to head up bakery chain Greggs.

The blue chip winner this morning included speciality pharmaceutical company Croda, which was up 2.7 per cent. AB Foods and Severn Trent also rose, by 1.5 and 1.12 per cent respectively.

Advertising group WPP, which yesterday said it was to take over digital consultancy Salmon, added more than one per cent in early deals.

On the FTSE All-Share, Ferrochrome producer International Ferro Metals added 5.6 per cent, while airline easyJet added 3.5 per cent. This morning the low cost carrier unveiled a nine per cent rise in revenue over the three months to December thanks to a boost from business travel.

Banking shares were a mixed bag in early trades. HSBC rose 0.4 per cent and RBS was up 0.31 per cent, while Barclays fell 0.05 per cent and Lloyds Banking Group was down 1.78 per cent.

In Asia, the Nikkei closed up 1.28 per cent and in the US the Dow Jones closed up 0.49 per cent.