FTSE enjoys second day of gains, buoyed by improvements in the financial sector

The FTSE has enjoyed a second day of gains following a sharp fall on the news that the Fed may begin tapering off its quantitative easing programme. The benchmark rose 1.0 per cent up to 6,163.15.

In particular, the financial sector showed solid gains, with Direct Line shares gaining 4.1 per cent (following the announcement it would be cutting costs by £1.3m and 2,000 jobs), Legal & General shares up 2.3 per cent (rising on the news it would buy annuity buyout firm Lucida for £151m), Barclays gaining 2.2 per cent, Lloyds Banking Group up 1.9 per cent, Standard Chartered 1.6 per cent, and HSBC 1.2 per cent.

These gains offset falls in the mining sector, including a 5.1 per cent drop in shares of Polymetal International, three per cent off Anglo American, and 2.6 per cent from Antofagasta.

In Europe, the German DAX was up 1.6 per cent, the French CAC and the Italian MIB both up two per cent, and the Spanish IBEX up 2.3 per cent.