(Sharecast News) - Stocks are pushing higher with traders apparently buying into the more upbeat news around the health of the US President and a second negative Covid-19 test result for his election rival.
Talk of further stimulus on both sides of the Pond and comments from the Prime Minister that a Brexit deal should be doable also boosted risk appetite.
Indeed, as of 1245 BST the Footsie was rallying 0.85% to 5,952.05, even as the pound edged up by 0.11% to 1.2929 against the US dollar, alongside a 0.9% gain for the FTSE 250 to 17,552.74.
Front month Brent crude oil futures were up as well, adding 3.97% to $40.83 a barrel on the ICE.
Reports over the weekend initially led to some talk that Donald Trump's illness might be worse than what doctors were letting on to, but the most recent updates on Sunday said that he was doing better.
On Brexit, which traders said would be a key reference for markets over the coming week, Boris Johnson had told BBC One's The Andrew Marr Show that a Brexit deal was "there to be done" and he hoped that Brussels would agree to a Canada-style agreement.
However, Johnson, who was speaking on the second day of the Tory conference, added that if the UK and the European Union failed to strike a deal then "we can more than live with it."
On the stimulus front, on Sunday, Johnson unveiled plans for a 'Generation Buy' programme to help young people get onto the housing ladder.
Across the Pond meanwhile, during the previous session, the speaker of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, had indicated that Trump's illness might change the arithmetic and pave the way for a deal on another stimulus package.
Back on home shores, IHS Markit's services sector Purchasing Managers' Index for September was revised up to show a reading of 56.1, against a preliminary print of 55.1 and a reading of 58.8 for August.
Show's over for Cineworld in UK and US
Cineworld on Monday confirmed it would temporarily suspend operations at all of its UK and US theatres from Thursday due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The company cited an "increasingly challenging theatrical landscape and sustained key market closures" adding that the move would hit 536 Regal theatres in the US and 127 Cineworld and Picturehouse theatres in the UK.
Oilfield equipment and services outfit, Weir Group, has inked an agreement for the sale of its Oil & Gas unit to US-based Caterpillar for an enterprise value of £314m. The company said that the transaction continued its transformation into a premium mining technology 'pure play' with the new funds enhancing its flexibility to invest in future growth opportunities.
Greencore said business had picked up in the fourth quarter after production was fully restored at its site in Northampton.The maker of sandwiches and other foods for supermarkets said annual earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation would be about £85m after charging more than £10m for one-off Covid-19 costs.
LXi REIT reported "robust" rent collection of 97% to date for the September to December quarter on Monday, having been "actively engaged" with all of its tenants over the summer. The FTSE 250 real estate investment trust said that as a result, it was further increasing its quarterly dividend guidance by 6% to 1.44p per share for the fourth quarter ending 31 December. It said that dividend was expected to be fully covered by net rental income for the quarter.
The merger between Vodafone's Indus Towers and Bharti Infratel is now set to proceed after the telecommunication company's lenders granted their consent for a 'security package' for the new company. Said package was meant to protect the new company should Vodafone Idea be unable to meet certain obligations under its Master Services Agreement. That had been the condition set for the merger to proceed and the parties would now approach the National Company Law Tribunal to make the merger effective.
FTSE 100 (UKX) 5,952.16 0.85%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 17,543.14 0.85%
techMARK (TASX) 3,798.99 1.29%
FTSE 100 - Risers
Melrose Industries (MRO) 122.15p 4.71%
Vodafone Group (VOD) 106.94p 4.01%
Rolls-Royce Holdings (RR.) 118.10p 3.96%
Royal Dutch Shell 'A' (RDSA) 966.40p 3.57%
Sainsbury (J) (SBRY) 197.90p 3.29%
Royal Dutch Shell 'B' (RDSB) 933.60p 3.27%
BT Group (BT.A) 101.75p 3.09%
Barratt Developments (BDEV) 505.60p 2.95%
Johnson Matthey (JMAT) 2,492.00p 2.76%
Compass Group (CPG) 1,192.50p 2.76%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Evraz (EVR) 339.10p -3.11%
Polymetal International (POLY) 1,668.00p -1.65%
Reckitt Benckiser Group (RB.) 7,546.00p -1.64%
Severn Trent (SVT) 2,488.00p -1.50%
Pennon Group (PNN) 1,055.00p -1.49%
Intertek Group (ITRK) 6,352.00p -1.37%
Ocado Group (OCDO) 2,627.00p -1.20%
Just Eat Takeaway.Com N.V. (CDI) (JET) 8,660.00p -1.12%
B&M European Value Retail S.A. (DI) (BME) 489.00p -0.69%
London Stock Exchange Group (LSE) 9,158.00p -0.43%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Weir Group (WEIR) 1,516.00p 18.44%
IWG (IWG) 279.60p 6.07%
Network International Holdings (NETW) 268.40p 5.92%
TP ICAP (TCAP) 230.00p 5.89%
Micro Focus International (MCRO) 254.00p 5.26%
Aggreko (AGK) 385.00p 5.13%
BMO Commercial Property Trust Limited (BCPT) 67.50p 4.81%
Mitchells & Butlers (MAB) 142.00p 4.72%
SDL (SDL) 680.00p 4.62%
TI Fluid Systems (TIFS) 163.30p 4.55%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Cineworld Group (CINE) 24.07p -39.02%
Greencore Group (GNC) 93.50p -8.15%
Indivior (INDV) 104.90p -6.42%
Centamin (DI) (CEY) 148.30p -5.27%
Watches of Switzerland Group (WOSG) 333.50p -3.33%
Hochschild Mining (HOC) 213.60p -2.64%
Dunelm Group (DNLM) 1,464.00p -2.59%
Petropavlovsk (POG) 32.60p -2.10%
Pets at Home Group (PETS) 397.40p -1.78%
Sanne Group (SNN) 611.00p -1.77%
SEOUL, June 18 (Reuters) - South Korea has pledged to donate a total of $200 million to the COVAX programme that is supplying coronavirus vaccines for lower-income countries, the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) said on Friday....