The FTSE 100 has been rising in early trading, getting close to 7,100 points for the first time since the 4th of October. Elsewhere in Europe the ECB is expected to hike interest rates by 75 basis points later today.
Lloyds Bank reported an increase in income that was in line with market forecasts, but profits slumped more than predicted due to an unexpectedly high rise in bad debt provisions.
Unilever raised its full-year sales forecast after it achieved what it called “strong” growth, driven by its success in passing on cost inflation.
Energy giant Shell kicked off a new US$4bn share buyback and announced a 25 US cent interim dividend, as it continued to reap the rewards of higher global energy prices.
Estate agents Foxtons was happy with its performance in all areas of its business, and now expects full-year results to be ahead of its initial forecasts.
Franchise Brands has said its underlying profits and revenues will be ahead of market expectations, with its two largest businesses, Metro Rod and Filta continuing to trade well.
And finally telecomms company BATM said its associate company, ADOR Diagnostics has entered into a cooperation agreement with the BIOASTER technology research institute in Lyon.