Investment firm Aberdeen Asset Management enjoyed a late surge today to top the year’s final FTSE risers’ board.
The stock closed up 3.1 per cent or 14.8p to close at 500p, rounding off an impressive year for the company, which unveiled plans in November to buy Scottish Widows Investment Partnership (Swip) from Lloyds Banking Group.
Aberdeen’s rise came a day after Thomas Buckingham, UK income manager at JP Morgan Asset Management, highlighted the stock’s “potential for future yield growth”.
The wider FTSE 100 index closed 17.82 points higher at 6,749.09, rounding off a 14 per cent rise for the year.
David Madden, a market analyst at IG, said traders would “pop the champagne corks”.
“Not only did they celebrate in honour of New Year’s Eve, but also because 2013 has been a stellar year for the stock market,” Madden said.
The Footsie has risen strongly over the past 12 months as the economic recovery has accelerated ahead of expectations.
More importantly for the internationally-focused index, prospects for the United States and the rest of the world have also been looking up.
British Airways and Iberia owner International Airlines Group has been among the best performers this year, more than doubling in value, with budget rival EasyJet also soaring by nearly 100 per cent.
IAG edged ahead by 2.4p today to 401.4p, while EasyJet climbed by 19p to 1,536p.
Miners have been among the worst performers over the past year due to fears over a slowdown in growth in emerging markets such as China and over the speed at which the US Federal Reserve plans to withdraw its support for the world’s largest economy.
Silver miner Fresnillo was down around 60 per cent for the year, with Antofagasta and Randgold Resources losing more than a third in value.
Fresnillo dipped by a further 0.5p today to 745.5p, while Antofagasta was down 10p at 824p and Randgold fell 11p to end the year at 3,790p.
The poor peformance over the past year by mining stocks has meant London has lagged behind markets in Europe and the US.