Footsie made a late charge for positive territory ahead of the close, in line with buoyancy in the US, but fell just short.
The positive performance in the US was in spite of non-farm payrolls declining 95,000 in September when they had been expected to remain virtually unchanged. The 'glass half full' optimists have taken the view that this makes a resumption of economic stimulus by the Federal Reserve more likely.
As such, many equities recovered some of the losses stacked up in the morning session, while miners are generally firmer on the day, though Footsie still looks set to end the week on a dull note.
Bank Barclays fell after PCP3, a vehicle linked to Man City owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed al-Nahyan, sold 220m shares in the UK bank.
The biggest fallers however, were silver miner Fresnillo and accountancy software giant Sage, both of which have been clobbered by broker notes.
Fresnillo has been cut to "underperform" from "neutral" by Merrill Lynch while Sage's rating has been cut from "neutral" to "sell" by UBS.
UBS has looked more kindly on oil explorer Heritage Oil, initiating coverage with a "buy" recommendation.
The biggest risers today were all mining stocks, on hopes of a resumption of fiscal stimulus measures by central banks worldwide. Lonmin, Xstrata, Anglo American and Rio Tinto are the pick of the bunch.
The sun is also shining on holiday company Thomas Cook. It and the Co-operative Group are merging their high street travel agents and foreign exchange businesses. Today's move creates Britain's largest high street travel network with over 1,200 shops - 803 Thomas Cook and 401 Co-op - and result in savings of over £35m a year.
Residential property firm Grainger said the preliminary valuation of its UK residential portfolio indicates a year on year increase in vacant possession values of 4.5% compared to increases of 2.5% and 3.1% in the Halifax and Nationwide indices respectively.
Tool and machinery hire firm Speedy Hire will take a £1.7m bad debt charge after the the collapse of social housing group Connaught, which was a big customer of the plant hire group.
Israeli technology firm Emblaze has successfully appealed against a decision by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to withhold £8.8m of VAT repayments claimed since March 2006.
The share price of Beowulf Mining continued its epic journey north on Friday after the company announced encouraging drilling results.
Shares in real-time 3D and 2D x-ray imaging specialist Image Scan shot up after the company held out high hopes for its new products. The company has invested in the redesign of the Axis baggage screening system resulting in what the company called "highly competitive" 3D and 2D versions of the Axis product range. A sale into the Middle East has already been secured on the back of this revised costing and pricing model.
Cleardebt is wanted soared after the debt reduction specialist said that last month it enacted a record number of individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs) to help clients deal with their debts.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Lonmin (LMI) 1,819.00p +3.94%
Xstrata (XTA) 1,296.00p +2.86%
Anglo American (AAL) 2,726.00p +2.31%
Randgold Resources (RRS) 6,515.00p +2.20%
Rio Tinto (RIO) 3,936.00p +1.84%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,272.00p +1.84%
BHP Billiton (BLT) 2,160.50p +1.79%
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,543.00p +1.38%
Rolls-Royce Group (RR.) 600.00p +1.35%
Shire Plc (SHP) 1,438.00p +1.27%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Sage Group (SGE) 269.60p -4.57%
Fresnillo (FRES) 1,248.00p -3.18%
Land Securities Group (LAND) 671.00p -2.33%
Barclays (BARC) 297.25p -2.24%
Cobham (COB) 227.90p -2.23%
BT Group (BT.A) 149.00p -1.84%
Essar Energy (ESSR) 485.20p -1.78%
Next (NXT) 2,219.00p -1.73%
Unilever (ULVR) 1,814.00p -1.68%
Wolseley (WOS) 1,570.00p -1.57%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Heritage Oil (HOIL) 346.00p +7.45%
easyJet (EZJ) 451.60p +4.54%
Thomas Cook Group (TCG) 185.70p +3.40%
Telecity Group (TCY) 499.20p +2.72%
WH Smith (SMWH) 459.60p +2.59%
Yell Group (YELL) 15.40p +2.53%
Hays (HAS) 117.90p +2.34%
Melrose Resources (MRS) 332.50p +2.31%
IMI (IMI) 794.50p +2.06%
Greggs (GRG) 459.80p +1.91%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Kenmare Resources (KMR) 17.20p -18.06%
Mcbride (MCB) 177.80p -5.22%
Hochschild Mining (HOC) 465.00p -5.14%
Petropavlovsk (POG) 1,020.00p -4.76%
Taylor Wimpey (TW.) 26.55p -4.39%
Hansen Transmissions International (HSN) 49.00p -3.92%
Technology group Emblaze saw shares surge on Monday after announcing that its UK subsidiary, Emblaze Mobility Solutions, has recovered 1.5m pounds which was part of the VAT repayments claimed withheld by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) since March 2006. [21 May '12]
US jobless data proved to be much worse than expected, with non-farm payrolls declining 95,000 in September when they had been expected to remain virtually unchanged, but the 'glass half full' optimists have taken the view that this makes a resumption of economic stimulus by the Federal Reserve more likely. [8 Oct '10]
The clock is ticking down on this afternoon's release of US non-farm payrolls data and the market is showing signs of nervousness, with the Footsie drifting back and in danger of slipping below 5600. [8 Oct '10]
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