FTSE 100 watch: Footsie inches higher as Italian worries abate

Shares in CRH in demand as group unveils organisational changes

FTSE 100 watch: Footsie inches higher as Italian worries abate

The UK benchmark index has inched higher in today’s session, staying on track to post a rise for the month, amid easing fears over the political situation in Italy which fuelled a selloff earlier in the week. In individual movers, CRH (LON:CRH) has soared to the top of the FTSE 100 leaderboard after unveiling plans to merge some of its European and American divisions.

FTSE 100 inches higher

As of 12:24 BST, the Footsie had added 16.81 points to stand 0.22 percent higher at 7,706.38. Investor sentiment has improved today with investors shrugging off worries over the situation in Italy which has been struggling to form a government since its elections earlier this year.

“A lot of it is due to the fact that (the FTSE) [...] is detached from Europe in many ways,” Ken Odeluga, market analyst at City Index, told Reuters. “Essentially, it’s about the make-up of what the bulk of those large caps on the FTSE do.”

Chris Beauchamp at IG meanwhile commented in a note that a recovery of the 7,761-point level “would provide some reassurance, but if the index can continue to hold 7,600 then it has survived its first serious pullback since the great move higher began back in late March”.

Individual Footsie movers

CRH has been today’s most notable FTSE 100 riser in percentage terms after the Irish building materials group unveiled plans to bring together some of its European and American units and establish a new global Building Products division. CRH’s shares are 3.99 percent better off at 2,787.00p.

Johnson Matthey (LON:JMAT) meanwhile is 0.85 percent up at 3,426.00p despite posting a fall in full-year profits. The specialty chemicals company, however, delivered a rise in sales and hiked its payout to shareholders.

The FTSE 100 was 0.35 percent higher at 7,716.29 points as of 12:36 BST on Thursday, 31 May 2018.

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