By Sara Sjolin, MarketWatch
LONDON (MarketWatch) — The U.K.’s FTSE 100 climbed for a third straight day on Thursday, tracking a positive mood in the U.S. and the rest of Europe.
The FTSE 100 /zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed UK:UKX +0.06% ended 0.2% higher at 6,463.55, after swinging between gains and losses. Stocks in Europe and the U.S. also traded higher on the back of some solid earnings and better-than-expected U.S. growth data.
Among major gainers in London, shares of St. James’s Place PLC /zigman2/quotes/200849568/delayed UK:STJ -0.21% climbed 3.6% after the wealth manager said funds under management climbed in the third quarter.
Shares of Barclays PLC /zigman2/quotes/208409333/delayed UK:BARC -0.17% /zigman2/quotes/206581728/composite BCS +1.18% ended 0.9% higher after trading both in positive and negative territory throughout the session. The bank reported third-quarter adjusted pretax profit that beat expectations, but booked a 500-million pound ($800 million) legal provision related to investigations into the alleged manipulation of the foreign-exchange market.
Other banks also rose. Shares of Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC /zigman2/quotes/209265718/delayed UK:RBS -1.06% /zigman2/quotes/203233010/composite RBS -0.97% gained 1.5% and Lloyds Banking Group PLC’s /zigman2/quotes/202285510/delayed UK:LLOY -1.75% /zigman2/quotes/200709414/composite LYG -1.34% climbed 0.9%.
Mining firms weakened capping gains for the FTSE. Precious-metals miners posted the biggest losses as gold prices /zigman2/quotes/210039467/delayed GCZ24 0.00% slumped more than 2%. Shares of Randgold Resources Ltd. lost 6%, and Fresnillo PLC /zigman2/quotes/201300065/delayed UK:FRES +1.23% dropped 4.3%. Among larger miners, Anglo American PLC /zigman2/quotes/201381512/delayed UK:AAL -0.04% gave up 2.4%, Rio Tinto PLC /zigman2/quotes/208934945/delayed UK:RIO +1.36% /zigman2/quotes/202627887/composite RIO +3.56% /zigman2/quotes/200083756/delayed AU:RIO +2.84% slipped 1.3%, and BHP Billiton PLC /zigman2/quotes/208108397/composite BHP +3.13% /zigman2/quotes/201448516/delayed AU:BHP +1.65% dropped 0.9%.
Outside the main index in London, Balfour Beatty PLC /zigman2/quotes/202863772/delayed UK:BBY -0.38% fell 1% after Jefferies cut the construction company to underperform from hold.