FTSE 250As of 04:46 25 February 2017 - Market closed
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FTSE slightly lower
The FTSE 100 is still slightly lower just after midday, having fallen 0.10% to 7294.84.
A number of big firms have gone ex dividend today, which means their shares fall by a corresponding amount to the dividend due to be paid.
Easyjet is down 5.6%, Rio Tinto has shed 3.19%, and HSBC is 2.18% lower.
Barclays is now trading 1.93% higher after a particularly strong set of results sent its shares up more than 3% earlier.
Shopping centre operator Intu Properties has jumped 6.43% after earnings beat expectations and it hiked its dividend.
Unilever and Lloyds boost FTSE 100
The FTSE 100 closed higher thanks to strong performances from Lloyds Bank and Unilever.
The benchmark index gained 0.38%, or 27.42 points, to 7,302.25 points.
Unilever was the best performer, rising 4.96% after the company promised a new growth strategy following its rejection of a takeover bid by Kraft Heinz last weekend.
Lloyds meanwhile gained 4.39% after announcing its profit for last year was up 158%.
The bank's figures were helped by a reduction in payment protection insurance provisions.
FTSE slips as Unilever slides
After a decent start the FTSE 100 is now in negative territory, trading 0.16% lower at 7,288.18 points.
Connor Campbell, an analyst at SpreadEx, says there are two main reasons for the sluggishness.
"Firstly, [there's] the rather substantial 7% loss by Unilever following Kraft Heinz’s abandoned merger attempt - though it must be noted that the Marmite maker has still benefited from the bid, keeping hold of a decent chunk of last Friday’s growth," he says.
"Secondly the pound has clawed back a portion of the losses it incurred following last week’s disappointing retail sales, with sterling climbing 0.4% against the dollar and 0.3% against the euro."
A weak pound can boost big FTSE-listed companies which generate much of their income in foreign currencies.
Unilever pushes FTSE 100 higher
The FTSE 100 closed higher after the pound fell against the dollar and Unilever shares jumped following a takeover bid.
The index gained 0.3%, or 22.04 points, to 7,299.96.
Unilever was by far the best performer, gaining 12.6%, while bottler Coca Cola HBC and tobacco firm Imperial Brands climbed 2.71% and 2.47% respectively.
The pound fell 0.55% to $1.24210 after a weak set of retail sales figures, although it held up against the euro.
A weak pound boosts the FTSE 100, as many of its constituents make their profits in foreign currencies.