Tesco sales report leads FTSE surge

Tesco sales report leads FTSE surge

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The FTSE 100 Index was up 57 points at 5827.3

Supermarkets are in sharp focus as Tesco reported robust third quarter sales and vague Qatari bid talk returned to boost Sainsbury’s shares.

The wider FTSE 100 Index was also surging ahead, up 57 points at 5827.3, while it was a similar picture on Wall Street.

America’s Dow Jones Industrial Average leapt more than 80 points soon after opening following news that President Barack Obama is to extend tax cuts for two years.

In London, higher metal prices were helping the market as mining shares surged.

BP lifted 2% or 7p to 457p, while among miners Antofagasta was 71p higher at 1528p.

Tesco was also one of the leading risers, up 2% or 8.7p to 428.7p, after its third quarter figures came in marginally above market expectations.

It said like-for-like sales were up 1.5% in the three months to November 27.

This was better than the 1.2% increase during the first half despite easing food price inflation.

The retail giant admitted the recent snow disruption had since impacted sales, but said lost ground would likely be recovered as consumers stock up over the next few weeks.

Rival Sainsbury’s was more than 4% higher, up 15.8p to 373.2p, as traders once more speculated over the possibility of takeover interest from the Qataris.

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