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FTSE 100 extends post-Xmas rally

The FTSE 100 held on to gains from its last session opening over 20 points higher today at 4,339.95 with continued strength from oil and mining stocks.

By 12.35pm, the UK benchmark index had risen 1.02 per cent to 4,363.55 as the price of crude oil held steady, helping the performance of BP which gained 7.25p to 521,50p and Heritage Oil which gained 9.25p to 207p per share.

Miners extend their rally with BHP Billiton gaining 2.09 per cent to 1,266p. Xstrata and Rio Tinto delivered a strong performance in early trades but by 12.35pm had dropped back 1p to 631,50p and 17p to 1,433p respectively.

Investors remain cautious on financial stocks, particularly those who dominated credit crunch column inches in 2008. HBOS drags on the blue chip index, down over 3 per cent to 67,90p with news that pension trustees are attempting to delay its planned merger with Lloyds TSB. By 12.35pm, Lloyds was also down 3.12 per cent to 124p and Barclays had fallen 0.80 per cent to 149,10p.


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