THURSDAY MARKET CLOSE: Weir rides wave of positive City sentiment

Glasgow-based engineering group Weir was top of the blue-chip risers' board
Glasgow-based engineering group Weir was top of the blue-chip risers' board
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Agreement to provide Greece with a short-term loan to see it through to the middle of next month helped propel European markets higher, although the euro fell to a fresh seven-year low against the pound on fears the country’s rescue may not be sustainable in the long run.

Glasgow-based engineering group Weir was the biggest beneficiary as a wave of positive sentiment swept through the City, with a rise of 67p or 4.2 per cent to 1,661p putting it at the top of the blue-chip risers’ board.

Jasper Lawler, market analyst at CMC Markets UK, said: “The European Central Bank’s willingness to raise the ceiling on the emergency liquidity assistance puts to bed the immediate risk of a banking collapse and paves the path towards the reopening of Greek banks.”

With Greece’s politicians last night approving a series of tax hikes and economic reforms, the FTSE 100 climbed 42.7 points to finish the session at 6,796.45.

Retailer Dixons Carphone was another gainer, closing up 6.7p at 468.2p after reporting a surge in profits in its first set of annual results since its formation by the merger of Carphone Warehouse with the owner of Currys and PC World.

Green power firm Infinis was also on the rise, sparking up 10.25p or 7 per cent to 156.5p as it said Tom Hinton, finance chief of Centrica Energy Canada, is set to replace Gordon Boyd as chief financial officer.

Sports Direct edged up 2p to 736.5p after enjoying a rise in full-year earnings that will trigger a £150 million bonus share award payout for thousands of the sportswear chain’s staff.

However, the upbeat mood in London did not spread to oil major BP, which was the heaviest top-flight faller with a decline of 5.1p to 422p. Gold and silver miner Fresnillo was also heading in the wrong direction, dipping 8p to 668.5p.