London market steadies after uncertain start

Business Materials 30 September 2008 18:55 (UTC +04:00)

After a wobbly start, the London stock market held its nerve Tuesday with the Financial Times Index up by lunchtime while bank shares were among the biggest fallers in a mixed session, reported dpa.

The FTSE-Index was up by 26.03 points - or 0.54 per cent - to reach 4844.80 points in mid-trading.

Analysts said that after the initial shock about the US failure to adopt the bail-out plan, investors were clearly hopeful that a package would eventually be agreed.

Nonetheless, bank shares were among the biggest fallers. Shares of HBOS, Britain's biggest mortgage lender which last week agreed to be taken over by Lloyds TSB, fell by 10 per cent, or 14.8 pence, to 127.2 pence.

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) shares were 7 per cent lower, falling by 12.4 pence to 168.6 pence.

RBS, which last year took over Dutch banking giant ABN Amro, has reassured investors that the acquisition of ABN Amro assets would not be affected by the forced sale of a stake by bid partner Fortis.

The major corporate news of the session came from supermarket chain Tesco, which saw its shares rise by 3 per cent - or 12.1 pence - to 382 pence after reporting a 10-per-cent rise in half-year profits.