Lloyds and Barratt boost FTSE 100

Image copyright AP

London's leading shares edged higher in early Wednesday trading, with Lloyds Bank and housebuilder Barratt the top gainers after posting big profit rises.

In the opening minutes, Lloyds added 3.8% after announcing that its profit for last year was up 158%.

The figures were helped by a reduction in payment protection insurance provisions.

Overall, the benchmark FTSE 100 index was up 11.87 points or 0.16% at 7,286.70.

Housebuilder Barratt was the second-biggest riser, up 3.6% after unveiling an 8.8% rise in half-yearly profits.

The announcement lifted the sector, with rivals Persimmon and Taylor Wimpey both adding more than 1.2%.

On the currency markets, the pound was 0.22% higher against the US dollar at $1.2501 and 0.38% up against the euro at 1.1885 euros.

BBC

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