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LSE Volume: 1,229 M
Avg Vol: 3,756 M -67%
Unchanged 717

FTSE races higher as BARC, SKY and BATS gain

FTSE indices raced higher with a raft of blue-chip news providing trading interest. Potential bid target RSA Insurance (RSA) came in for profit taking after yesterday's surge, but traders liked updates from Barclays (BARC), British American Tobacco (BATS), and Sky (SKY).

Barclays pre-tax profits up

Barclays' group profits rose on both an adjusted and statutory basis in the six months to the end of June. It reported 11% growth in adjusted pretax profit to £3,729m, reflecting improvements in all core operating businesses.

Press Roundup

A brief summary of Wednesday's main business headlines... Extensive coverage of P&G naming new top boss, the Twitter share slide, ailing oil prices, the GKN-Fokker deal, Britain's supermarkets, BP profits wiped out by Deepwater Horizon explosion and much more...

Greggs sales

Bakery group Greggs reports a strong first half with total sales up 6.4% at £398m. Own shop like-for-like sales rose 5.9% (2014: 3.2%) and prior year restructuring benefits contributed £2.4m year-on-year.

RBS offer

Royal Bank of Scotland Group said its offering of shares in Citizens Financial Group comprises 86 million shares, or 16.0% of its common stock, at a public offering price per share of $26.00.