The FTSE 100 Index held firm today despite another tumultuous session for markets in Asia.
The merger agreement between Lloyds TSB and HBOS steadied nerves in London after the Footsie lost 9 per cent over the first three days of the week. The FTSE 100 Index was 54.7 points higher at 4967.1, helped by stronger mining, banking and oil stocks.
HBOS shares rose 29 per cent to 190p after the agreement with Lloyds ended uncertainty over the bank's future.
The picture was less comforting in Asia, where all the regional benchmarks were deeply in the red. Investors tracked earlier declines on Wall Street amid fears that more companies could succumb to the global financial crisis that forced the US to bail out US insurer AIG.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the session 4 per cent lower last night, a fall of more than 400 points.
Richard Hunter, head of equities at Hargreaves Lansdown stockbrokers, said a recovery for banks and miners helped the Footsie.
He said: "The market remains on a knife-edge and it would not take much to knock sentiment again."Reuse content