Seventh day of straight gains for the FTSE

<p>The FTSE 100 saw a seventh day of consecutive gains in low volumes with many traders away from their dealing screens for the US Independence Day holiday. […]</p>

The FTSE 100 saw a seventh day of consecutive gains in low volumes with many traders away from their dealing screens for the US Independence Day holiday. Continued demand for heavyweight mining and oil firms, along with high demand for property firms, pushed the UK Index higher by 38 points going into the close, with profit taking in UK banks preventing the FTSE from rallying further.

It’s been yet another positive session for the FTSE 100, though we must recognise the fact that much of today’s advance was certainty exacerbated by low volumes. That said, the terrific run of gains seen in the FTSE of late is certainly giving those who want to take profits at current levels a bit of a problem in fearing missing out on any continued moves higher. If the FTSE 100 can come through near term resistance of 6050, then the UK Index could be primed for another attack on the year’s high of 6105.

The reaction from ratings agency Standard and Poor to caution that the recent draft agreement by French and German banks to rollover Greek debt, despite the voluntary nature of it, could be classified as a selective default, reminds traders that despite the austerity package and stock market reactions last week, the Greek situation remains far from resolved. The reaction from Standard and Poor has however given traders an excuse to reduce the size of their holdings in some of the UK banking stocks, forcing the banking sector lower by 0.5%.

Topping the weaker banking stocks was shares of Lloyds Banking Group, whose share slumped 1.5% after a stellar week of gains last week that saw prices rise 17%. Today we have seen investors locking in their gains after last weeks strong rally. Shares are now trading back along the key psychological level of 50p.

One of the standout performers today has been property stocks, largely on positive broker comments. Deutsche Bank recommending the shares of British Land immediately sent the company’s shares towards the top of the FTSE 100 equity leader board, with share prices rallying 2.5% in the process. Peer Land Securities also saw higher demand on the day, rallying 1.7%.

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