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FTSE 100 Rises As Pound Hits Three-week Low

U.K. shares were slightly higher on Thursday even as markets elsewhere across Europe started the day on a subdued note on worries about Catalonia's independence vote from Spain and amid caution ahead of the U.S. government's non-farm payrolls report due out Friday.

The benchmark FTSE 100 was up 13 points or 0.18 percent at 7,480.83 in late opening deals, with sentiment helped by a weaker pound and gains in resources stocks.

The pound hovered near three-week lows against the dollar, hit by weak car sales data and S&P comments that the U.K. economy may not withstand an interest rate rise.

Utility Centrica rose 0.7 percent and SSE rallied as much as 1.8 percent after Prime Minister Theresa May revived plans to cap energy prices.

Miners Antofagasta, Anglo American and Glencore gained over 1 percent each as LME base metals prices held steady near multi-year highs.

Theme park operator Merlin Entertainments jumped 2 percent on a Bloomberg report that it approached SeaWorld about a possible acquisition.

Royal Dutch Shell rose half a percent. The oil giant said it plans major maintenance involving 12 units at its Pernis oil refinery in the Netherlands.

Telecommunications company Vodafone edged up 0.2 percent after announcing a significant evolution of its brand positioning strategy.

Furniture retailer DFS fell nearly 4 percent after it reported a 22.3 percent fall in pre-tax profits in the year to July 29.

by RTT Staff Writer

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