UK stocks benefited from its central bank’s positive outlook as the FTSE 100 finished in the green zone on Thursday after the Bank of England gave an upward revision on its forecast for the country’s economy, from its downgraded estimates casted in the wake of controversial break up with the European Union.
Shares of the FTSE 100 futures extended its rally in two days as it registered 0.5% advancement to close at 7 140.75, following the 0.1% gain scored last Wednesday.
This surge in Thursday was prompted mainly by the dovish comments from the country’s central bank, saying that it sees a 2.0% GDP growth in 2017, up from the 1.4% estimate made last November.
The BoE also decided to keep its interest rates unchanged at 0.25%, which was expected by the markets, and released its quarterly inflation report that sent the British pound tumbling by 1% against its major counterparts and backed below the 1.26 level versus the US dollar.
FTSE 100 normally takes advantage on a weaker pound as companies listed in London can have higher profits overseas, with 75% of company revenues in the benchmark generated outside the country.
The blue-chip Smurfit Kappa Group led the scoring charge and served as the biggest contributor to the index as its shares jumped 4.6% higher while Royal Dutch Shell PLC ramped up 1.6%, as the oil producer registered a near 70% surge to $9.2 billion in its fourth-quarter cash flow.