The FTSE 100 index was higher at midday on Tuesday as investors cheered a swathe of bullish company updates, with Lloyds Banking Group
Miners and integrated oils rose too, in tandem with commodity prices, helping London's blue-chip index <.FTSE> gain 73.64 points, or 1.3 percent to 5,584.46 by 1208 GMT, having shed 0.3 percent on Monday.
Lloyds rose 8.3 percent, leading the banking sector <.FTNMX8350> higher, as the part state-owned bank reiterated full-year guidance, which analysts said was a positive that helped offset a third-quarter loss.
Seymour Pierce analyst Bruce Packard said: There does not seem to be any monsters in these results and we welcome Lloyds eventual acknowledgement of reality.
FTSE heavyweight Vodafone
Marks & Spencer
An analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers said: With much of the retail pain already priced in, the numbers have come as a welcome relief to M&S investors.
Supporting the gains, U.S. stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Wall Street, ahead November U.S. IBD consumer confidence numbers due out at 1500 GMT.
WEAK VOLUMES, EUROPE CONCERN
Volume was 36 percent of the average 90-day volume as worries surrounding euro zone debt contagion remained, with Italian government bond yields holding near euro-era highs ahead of prime minister Silvio Berlusconi facing a crucial vote on public finances in parliament.
In Greece, party leaders struggled to agree on a new prime minister, as the nation and the EU clamoured for a deal on a unity coalition to save the country's finances.
After huge volatility and political turmoil in Greece, as well as Italy's problems looming in the background, we prefer to take a wait-and-see approach before retreating from our positive view on defensives and our negative view on financials, said Léon Cornelissen, analyst at Robeco which has more than 150 billion euros assets under management.
Food and retail group Associated British Foods
We view ABF as an attractive investment proposition, particularly so with ongoing economic and political uncertainty leading to volatility in equity market, Shore Capital adds repeating its buy rating on the stock.
On the downside, InterContinental Hotels Group
Tate & Lyle
Worries over the economy remained as data showed British industrial output flat lined in September, although manufacturing rose slightly.
(Editing by Dan Lalor)