London - Britain's top shares bounced back on Monday as a delay in potential US military action against Syria alongside robust economic data out of China and the UK helped drive a broad-based equity market rally.
The energy sector was among the only fallers, down in tandem with oil prices, as worries over possible Middle East supply disruptions receded after US President Barack Obama said at the weekend that any punitive strikes against Syria would wait until lawmakers had a chance to vote.
The FTSE 100 was up 102.90 points, or 1.6 percent, at 6,515.83 points by 12:48 SA time, led by miners and banks, with the index more than recovering from last week's loss.
“The pull-back that we've seen from politicians ... has allowed some of that negative sentiment to dissipate. Investors have been able to focus a little bit more on the fundamentals,” Henk Potts, market strategist at Barclays, said.
Mining stocks rose 3.4 percent - on track for their biggest one-day percentage rise in just under a month - as data showed factories in top metals consumer China had their best growth in months in August.
Further brightening the picture, British manufacturing accelerated again in August and new orders and output rose at their fastest pace in nearly 20 years.
Vodafone, up 3.8 percent, added 15 points the FTSE, with the telecoms group and its US partner Verizon Communications expected to announce a $130 billion deal that will give the US firm complete control of Verizon Wireless, subject to final board approval, people familiar with the matter said.
Trading volume in Vodafone was robust, at around 100 percent of its 90-day daily average, against just a third on the UK benchmark, where volume was expected to remain thin on Monday as the US stock market was shut for a national holiday. - Reuters