Stocks rise on oil rebound and stimulus hopes

London Stock ExchangeFri close: Miners and oil stocks were positive performers as London headed for a its best week of the year.

Asian markets rallied overnight as oil prices rebounded and Europe provided a lead following hints from the European Central Bank that it might consider further stimulus.

The FTSE 100 followed earlier gains in Japan, China and Hong Kong. London’s leading index closed up 126.22 points (2.19%) at 5,900.01. It is 96 points, or 1.7%, higher on the week. Stocks on Wall Street made a strong start to the day, with the Dow Jones climbing 1.1%, but fell back a little to trade 0.7% higher by late morning.

In Japan, the Nikkei leapt 5.9% and markets in China recovered some of their previous losses. The Shanghai Composite gained 0.8% higher and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 2.2%.

In early trade Brent crude was up 98 cents at $30.23 a barrel, while US crude was 85 cents higher at $30.38 a barrel.

But the fall-out in the oil and gas industry continues. Schlumberger said it has lost more than $1bn and slashed a further 10,000 jobs and warned it does not expect a turnaround anytime soon.

Schlumberger said it streamlined costs and cut jobs during the last three months of 2015 to prepare for weaker business in early 2016.


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