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FTSE 100 rebounds and sterling rises FTSE 100 rebounds and sterling rises
(about 4 hours later)
London's main share index is on track for its fourth straight week of gains. having recovered some of the ground lost in the past two days. London's main share index has notched up its fourth straight week of gains. having recovered some of the ground lost in the past two days.
Shortly after midday, the FTSE 100 was up 29.54 points at 7,465.96. At the close on Friday, the FTSE 100 was up 34.29 points at 7,470.71.
The FTSE fell on Wednesday and Thursday as markets were hit by the uncertainty surrounding the Trump presidency.The FTSE fell on Wednesday and Thursday as markets were hit by the uncertainty surrounding the Trump presidency.
The row over the firing of FBI director James Comey led to growing scepticism about Mr Trump's ability to deliver tax and regulatory reform.The row over the firing of FBI director James Comey led to growing scepticism about Mr Trump's ability to deliver tax and regulatory reform.
But the FTSE 100 saw a broad-based recovery on Friday, with gold miner Fresnillo leading the way - up 2.8%. The company has benefited from a rise in the gold price this week, which was triggered by the events in the US. But the FTSE 100 saw a broad-based recovery on Friday, with software and IT firm Micro Focus International leading the way - up 2.7%.
The biggest faller on the index was Hikma Pharmaceuticals. Its shares dropped 5.2% after the company cut its full-year revenue forecast. The biggest faller on the index was Smiths Group, down 2.8% after announcing that chief financial officer Chris O'Shea was stepping down.
Last week, Hikma had said that its launch of a generic asthma drug would be delayed after its approval was blocked by US regulators.
On the currency markets, the pound rebounded back above the $1.30 mark. On Thursday, it had reached an eight-month high of $1.3048 after the release of stronger-than-expected retail sales figures, but fell back in late trade.On the currency markets, the pound rebounded back above the $1.30 mark. On Thursday, it had reached an eight-month high of $1.3048 after the release of stronger-than-expected retail sales figures, but fell back in late trade.
However, on Friday it was trading at $1.3009. Against the euro, the pound was down slightly at 1.1645 euros. However, on Friday it was trading at $1.3029. Against the euro, the pound was down slightly at 1.1643 euros.