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FTSE blog: FTSE makes small gains as EU leaders gather in Brussels

16.49: The FTSE 100 has ended the day up 0.5 per cent as eurozone leaders began to gather at the emergency summit in Brussels.

The blue-chip index closed the day at 5553.24, a rise of 0.5 per cent, while in Europe, the French Cac 40 and the German Dax fell 0.2 and 0.5 per cent respectively.

Doubts remain between Euro leaders about how to bolster the EU’s bailout fund for struggling nations.

16.03: The FTSE 100 has fallen marginally to stand at 5517.80.

The 0.1 per cent fall in the blue-chip index is in contrast to a 0.8 per cent fall for the German Dax, while the French Cac 40 has also fallen by 0.1 per cent.

14.41: The FTSE 100 is up almost 1 per cent as plans to tackle the eurozone debt crisis are set to be discussed in Brussels this afternoon.

At 14.41, the blue-chip index stood at 5574.96, a rise of 0.9 per cent, while across Europe the French Cac 40 and the German Dax were both up by 1.5 per cent.

13.59: European markets have made nominal gains ahead of the emergency summit in Brussels to tackle the eurozone debt crisis.

At 13.59, the FTSE 100 was up 0.3 per cent to stand at 5542.10, while the French Cac 40 and the German Dax are both up 0.5 per cent.

12:57: Blue-chip index up 0.2 per cent at 5536.52.

11.30: The FTSE continues to hold its ground in morning trades, having risen by 0.18 per cent to stand at 5535.24.

10:20: The FTSE holds steady mid-morning, falling 0.03 per cent to 5525.72.

9:15: The FTSE 100 has held its ground in early trades ahead of an emergency summit in Brussels designed to finalise details for a plan to tackle the eurozone debt crisis.

At 9.09, the blue-chip index stood at 5535.89, while the German Dax, French Cac 40 and FTSE eurofirst 300 were all steady.

Main points ahead of the emergency summit in Brussels:

·     European leaders are to meet today and are expected to discuss a write down on Greek debt with private bondholders, the recapitalisation of European banks and how to increase the effectiveness of the European Financial Stability Facility.

·     In Italy, prime minister Silvio Berlusconi was last night fighting the collapse of his coalition government after the European Union demanded he install concrete economic reforms in time for today’s summit of eurozone leaders. The Italian press are reporting Berlusconi has agreed to step down in the coming months.

·     German Chancellor Angela Merkel has raised fresh objections about the role of the European Central Bank in helping struggling eurozone economies.

·     France is still hopeful the European Central Bank would support the EFSF by providing it with loans that would increase the fund’s size to around £1.7-2.6tn.

·     Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg warns Conservatives there would be no move towards leaving EU while the Liberal Democrats are in Government, following this week’s back-bench rebellion.

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