FTSE closes on 3-week high

<p>The FTSE 100 closed on a high on Friday as investors take confidence from improved global economy.</p>

The FTSE enjoyed a strong week closing on a high on Friday (July 4th).

Britain's top share index hit a three and a half week high at the end of last week as investors take confidence from improving circumstance throughout the global economy. The final day of trading of the week was relatively quiet thanks to the Independence Day in the US and the FTSE's high followed on from the Dow Jones Industrial Average closing above 17,000 for the first time in its history.

The US' strong economic data raised expectation across the rest of the world and prompted the FTSE to record its best weekly gains since the beginning of May. It was helped by top FTSE performer easyJet rising one per cent following a ten per cent increase in passenger numbers during June, compared to the same period a year earlier.

Speaking to Reuters, Henk Potts, equity strategist at Barclays, said: "I think the earnings that you see from companies will still be very supportive and good news for sentiment, but appreciate that actually investors may become a little bit nervous as we go through that period of liquidity starting to be removed and as interest rates start to normalise.

While the budget airline enjoyed a positive past seven day it was a different story for sports clothing retailer Sports Direct. The company was the biggest faller of the week with a 2.1 per cent drop. It came after report by the Guardian that investors were expected to vote against the re-election of the chairman and other board members at the annual general meeting in September.

The dispute is over plans for a multimillion pound bonus scheme for founder Mike Ashley. Mr Ashley, who is also owner of Newcastle United FC, put forward plans for a new scheme which will provide 3,000 permanent staff with 25 million free shares worth around £180 million. The proposal was approved by 60 per cent of votes despite huge opposition from shareholder lobby groups.

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