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UK stocks open 0.2% higher

By BFN News | 08:59 AM | Tuesday 14 November, 2017

UK stocks opened stronger on Tuesday as local political uncertainty kept pressure on the pound and Vodafone and Tesco posted strong gains. At 0856, the benchmark FTSE 100 index had added 11.61 points, or 0.2% higher, to 7,426.79. Vodafone jumped 4.2% after the telecom giant upgraded its annual earnings forecast on the back of solid revenue growth in Europe. Tesco rallied 5.1% after the competition regulator granted provisional approval to the supermarket chain's proposed acquisition of wholesaler Booker Group, which gained 5.2%. ITV, however, fell 3.1% after reporting a 1% fall in revenue for the first nine months of the year. Aviva said it had agreed to acquire Irish insurer Friends First Life Assurance Company for €130m, pushing its shares 0.6% higher. Bovis Homes Group gained 1.8% after announcing that it expected to deliver an increase in average selling prices for the year Centrica, meanwhile, added 0.2% after announcing it had expanded into Italy through a five-year partnership arrangement with Eni gas e luce. A 2% drop in first-quarter revenue sent Smiths Group shares down 1.3%. The company nevertheless stuck to its guidance for the full year of a return to growth, pinning the revenue decline on the timing of orders. Discount retailer B&M shed 2.6% despite booking a 17.8% rise in first-half pre-tax profits and appointing Peter Bamford as its new chairman. Healthcare company BTG added 0.4% after reiterating its full year guidance amid product sales growth of 17% in the first half. Events organiser UBM gained 2.5% after announcing that it expected to post a full-year result "at least" in line with expectations Story provided by

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