FTSE hits 6700

The release of better-than-expected manufacturing figures from China has pushed the FTSE 100 to the 6700 level.

Overnight, the Chinese HSBC manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) came in at 50.9 for October. As the market consensus had been for a reading of 50.4, this prompted dealers to buy natural resource stocks. Consequently, the London index was pushed beyond the 6700 mark. However, despite the report revealing that Chinese manufacturing is at a seven-month high, some investors are concerned about how well-positioned Chinese banks may be, as the interbank borrowing rate is at its highest since June.

Sports Direct is offside after its founder sold off over £100 million worth of shares. Mike Ashley reduced his stake in the sports retailer by 2.7%, but still controls over 60% of shares. The stock is trading at 681p, down 4.3%.

Kazakhmys reported an increase in copper production in the third quarter and is on track to achieve its full-year production guidance. The share price is up 4.5%.

Rolls-Royce Group is up 2.5% after the company announced it had won a contract with an offshore Korean company, worth £22 million.

We are expecting the Dow to open up 75 points at 15,488, as traders await the jobless claims report at 1.30pm (London time). The market consensus is for the number of claimants to drop by 15,000.

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