Banks drive FTSE higher

In London, the banking sector is up over 1% pushing the overall market higher.

British banks have been given a boost by their US counterparts after Citigroup posted better-than-expected results. This lifted confidence in London-listed banks as they are yet to report second-quarter figures.

The political uncertainty surrounding Portugal has pushed up eurozone bond yields. The main political parties have restructured the coalition government with the aim of getting the country bad on track to recovery, and to hopefully leave the bailout programme this year.

The mining sector is still in the black despite drifting lower throughout the afternoon. Traders bought mining stocks as China revealed a second-quarter gross domestic product of 7.5%, in line with expectations. Some economists are afraid that China is experiencing a credit bubble, so the report reassured dealers that the country is strong.

In the US, the Dow is up 11 points at 15,475. The US reported mixed economic data this afternoon, with Empire State Manufacturing beating analysts’ expectations and retail sales and business inventories missing estimates. 

This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 79% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage.