Markets

First-class finish: UK markets close 2017 on a record high

The UK stock markets have smashed a record high on the last trading day of the year.

The FTSE 100 climbed 0.85 per cent in the half-day session, reaching 7,697.6. Over the year, the blue-chip index rose 7.6 per cent.

Meanwhile, the FTSE 250 rose 0.41 per cent to a record 20,726.3. The index was up by 14.6 per cent over the year.

Read more: The FTSE in 2017: Five charts that tell the story

Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets, said: "Equities are trying to eke out the most of an already generous Santa rally.

"The only blot is European bourses struggling under the weight of a weaker US dollar and thus penalised by a stronger euro. The FTSE would normally find hindrance in similarly derived sterling gains, however, higher oil prices, a strong commodity sector and interest in select defensives are providing a welcome offset."

The FTSE 100 was lead by Old Mutual and Fresnillo, which climbed 3.02 per cent and 2.81 per cent respectively.

Other mining stocks performed strongly as copper traded at four-year highs; gold prices have reached their highest level in a month, and are on track for their best year since 2010. Randgold climbed 2.07 per cent to 7,410p, and Rio Tinto was up 2.18 per cent to 3,942p.

Original Article

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