FTSE 100 boosted by AstraZeneca rise

Traders in London Image copyright Getty Images

The FTSE 100 closed higher, boosted by a rise for AstraZeneca after it reported that a cancer drug trial showed promising results.

The company said that a trial of its immunotherapy drug Imfinzi had lowered the risk of stage III lung cancer worsening or causing death.

AstraZeneca ended 8.46% up, making it the biggest riser in the FTSE 100.

The increase helped the benchmark share index finish 0.57% up, or 42.2 points, at 7,428.8.

The biggest faller was Provident Financial, down 2.2% despite reporting quarterly trading figures that were broadly in line with analysts' estimates.

Outside the top flight, shares in Entertainment One - the company behind the Peppa Pig children's TV series - fell 2.7% after it said it would take a £47m one-off charge to cover the cost of "reshaping" its film unit.

The charge covers the renegotiation of a distribution agreement, and costs incurred by the company as it moves away from physical distribution towards a focus on digital content.

In Frankfurt and Paris, the main indexes closed just more than 0.4% up.

On the currency markets, the pound was down 0.05% against the dollar at $1.2881, and fell 0.7% against the euro to 1.1783 euros.