The FTSE 100 Index has returned above the 6000 barrier after Wall Street shrugged off poor jobs data to finish in positive territory on Friday.
Continuing unrest in Egypt and ongoing fears over the health of the global economy have failed to dent world markets in recent days, with London’s top flight opening the week 38.7 points higher at 6035.7.
The mood will be tested over the next few days, with results from heavyweights Diageo and Rolls-Royce and the latest decision on interest rates from the Bank of England as policymakers grapple with inflationary pressures.
Banks were among the stocks on the front foot as Barclays lifted 5.15p to 313.25p and Lloyds Banking Group cheered 1.45p to 65.2p.
In corporate news, Bellway offered some rare cheer from the house market by revealing encouraging levels of visitor interest and subsequent reservations since the turn of the year.
Bellway’s shares rose 12.5p to 652p, although the rest of the sector was more subdued as Taylor Wimpey dropped 0.2p to 37.2p and Persimmon remained unchanged at 420.5p.
Shares in men’s clothing business Moss Bros jumped 15%, up 3.5p to 27.5p, after it announced the sale of its Hugo Boss stores for £16.5 million and said recent trading held up well despite the weather.