Business

FTSE 100 closes higher after strong services data

Market trader (file picture) Image copyright Getty Images

(Close): The FTSE 100 closed slightly higher after data showed better-than-expected growth in Britain's service sector.

The Markit/CIPS purchasing managers' index (PMI) for services rose to 55, compared with economists' expectations of a slight increase to 53.5.

The London market gained 0.13%, or 9.86 points, to 7,331.68.

Miners were the biggest risers for much of the session, gaining on the back of higher oil and metals prices.

Antofagasta gained 2.09%, BHP Billiton was up 1.79%, and Rio Tinto climbed 0.92%.

The biggest riser was restaurants and Costa Coffee owner Whitbread, up 2.95%.

South Africa-focused insurer Old Mutual continued to suffer amid concerns about political turmoil in the country. Its shares fell 4.38%.

On the currency markets, the pound was up 0.31% against the dollar at $1.2479 and 0.48% higher against the euro at 1.1712 euros.