UPDATE 2-Consumer staples, miners lift London's FTSE 100; Vodafone surges


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markets, click LIVE/ or type LIVE/ in a news window)
    * Vodafone jumps on strong earnings
    * UK retail sales gain in June
    * Beazley, Ultra Electronics push mid-caps higher
    * FTSE 100 up 0.9%, FTSE 250 adds 0.9%

 (Updates to close)
    By Shashank Nayar and Amal S
    July 23 (Reuters) - The FTSE 100 index ended higher on
Friday, led by gains in consumer staples and a jump in Vodafone
shares on strong results, while Ultra Electronics surged on a
takeover bid from aerospace manufacturer Cobham.
    The blue-chip index  .FTSE  ended 0.9% higher, with consumer
staples and miners leading gains. The index inched 0.3% higher
this week, rebounding from an initial dip as concerns around
slowing global economic recovery and surging Delta variant of
the coronavirus caused a sell-off.
    "Towards the end of last week and on Monday, the market saw
a three day sell off, and now we've recovered, that's all driven
by a recovery in U.S markets and corporate earnings," said Keith
Temperton, equity sales trader at Forte Securities.
    Mobile operator Vodafone  VOD.L  jumped 2.4% and was among
the largest gainers on the FTSE 100 after it reported a
better-than-expected 3.3% rise in first-quarter service revenue.
    "We're about to go into the biggest earnings season next
week and everyone is anticipating more solid earnings as some of
the major names are reporting," Temperton added. 
    Aiding sentiment was a jump in British retail sales in June,
which sent shares of retail stocks  .FTNMX404010  up by nearly
1.0%.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nAPN360R00
    The FTSE 100 has gained 8.7% so far this year led by dovish
central bank policies and government stimulus, but has
underperformed its wider European and local mid-cap peers due to
inflation concerns and rising coronavirus infections.
    Dollar-earning consumer staples stocks, including Unilever
 ULVR.L , Reckitt Benckiser Group  RB.L , British American
Tobacco  BATS.L  and Diageo Plc  DGE.L  were among top gainers
on weaker pound.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2OZ0FN  
    The domestically focussed mid-cap index  .FTMC  rose 0.9% on
strong earnings updates from insurer Beazley, while Ultra
Electronics was the top gainer on Cobham's takeover
offer. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2OZ0T7  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2OZ0TE
    However, Britain's rapid economic bounce-back from the
pandemic slowed sharply in July as a new wave of cases forced
hundreds of thousands of workers to self-isolate under
government rules to limit the spread of the disease. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2OZ2A2
    Among other stocks, Britain's NatWest Group  NWG.L  rose
2.5% after it agreed to sell assets from its Irish arm to
Permanent TSB  IL0A.I .  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2OZ1ER

Retailers outperform FTSE 100 since mid-July as easing lockdown
spur demand    https://tmsnrt.rs/2W8I2lD
 (Reporting by Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru; Editing by
Uttaresh.V, Shailesh Kuber and David Evans)
 ((Shashank.Nayar@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223
8780; outside U.S. +91 80 6182 2256;))
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 UK stock report      .L     
 FTSE index:          0#.FTS6  
 techMARK 100 index:  .FTT1X          FTSE futures:      0#FFI:  
 Gilt futures:        0#FLG:          Smallcap index:     .FTSC  
 FTSE 250 index:      .FTMC           FTSE 350 index:     .FTLC  
 Market digest:       .AD.L           Top 10 by vol:      .AV.L  
 Top price gainers:   .NG.L           Top % gainers:      .PG.L  
 Top price losers:    .NL.L           Top % losers:       .PL.L  
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 UK hot stocks:       HOT  and  GB      Wall Street:           .N 
 Gilts report:        GB/             Euro bond report  GVD/EUR 
 Pan European stock report:  .EU 
 Tokyo stocks:        .T              HK stocks:            .HK 
 Sterling report:     GBP/            Dollar report:       USD/ 
 * For company prices, click on - *
 Company directory:   UKEQ           By sector:           FTAX  
 * For pan-European market data, click on - *
 European Equities speed guide................  EUR/EQUITY  
 FTSE Eurotop 300 index...........................  .FTEU3  
 DJ STOXX index...................................  .STOXX  
 Top 10 STOXX sectors........................  .PGL.STOXXS  
 Top 10 EUROSTOXX sectors...................  .PGL.STOXXES  
 Top 10 Eurotop 300 sectors..................  .PGL.FTEU3S  
 Top 25 European pct gainers....................  .PG.PEUR  
 Top 25 European pct losers.....................  .PL.PEUR ))

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