LONDON MARKETS: FTSE 100 Ends Higher For 3rd Day In Row As Manufacturing Gauge Hits 4-month High

By Sara Sjolin and Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

U.K. benchmark nabs weekly win; miners extend gains

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U.K. stocks finished higher for a third straight session on Friday, cementing their weekly gain, after better-than-expected manufacturing data.

The FTSE 100 index rose 0.1% to end at 7,438.50, building on a 0.9% rally from Thursday (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/ftse-100-bounces-back-from-1-week-low-as-north-korea-fears-ease-2017-08-30).

The London blue-chip benchmark scored a 0.5% weekly advance, as initial worries about a North Korean missile test at the beginning of the week eased and attention turned to upbeat economic reports.

On Friday, Markit delivered encouraging data for the U.K., with the August manufacturing purchasing managers' index jumping to a four-month high of 56.9, compared with an upwardly revised 55.3 in July. Economists had expected a reading of 55.

"A significant beat for the manufacturing PMI clearly shows that the sector remains in rude health, with a weak pound continuing to keep it competitive despite hard-Brexit clouds overhead," said Joshua Mahony, market analyst at IG, in a note.

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The pound spiked to an intraday high of $1.2996 in the afternoon after a monthly U.S. jobs report missed expectations. However, sterling pared its gain a bit against its American counterpart to trade recently at $1.2973, compared with $1.2931 late Thursday in New York.

The closely watched nonfarm payrolls disappointed with only 156,000 jobs (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/us-gains-156000-jobs-in-august-but-unemployment-rate-edges-up-to-44-2017-09-01) added to the economy last month, the unemployment rate ticking higher and wage growth stagnating.

Stock movers: Miners posted some of the biggest gains in London as metals rose across the board (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/gold-gains-ahead-of-payrolls-report-adding-to-4-august-climb-2017-09-01). Shares of Antofagasta PLC (ANTO.LN) gained 2.2%, Glencore PLC (GLEN.LN) put on 2.1%, and Anglo American PLC (AAL.LN) added 1.3%.

Outside the FTSE 100, shares of Indivior PLC (INDV.LN) plunged 36% after a U.S. court found that competitor drugs for heroin addiction treatment (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/indivior-plunges-after-court-ruling-on-patents-2017-09-01) don't infringe on the pharmaceutical company's patents.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

September 01, 2017 11:57 ET (15:57 GMT)