Banks help U.K. stocks to 1% weekly gain
LONDON (MarketWatch) -- U.K. stocks rallied Friday, closing the week up 1%, as resource firms and banks scored big gains.
London investors applauded as European leaders surprised them with a raft of measures aimed at stimulating growth and aiding the euro zone's ailing banking sector, touching off a global rally in equities and sparking buying in commodities.
The FTSE 100 index (UKX) rose 1.4% to 5,571.15, after closing with losses for five of the past six trading days. For the week the index closed 1% higher. It lost 3.4% for the quarter.
Energy shares led the London charge as oil prices rallied, jumping above $82 a barrel in New York.
Metals prices were also on the rise, spurring a rally in U.K. mining stocks.
The broader U.K. stock market tracked sharp gains across Europe, after the region's leaders struck a deal on a 120 billion euro ($151 billion) growth package to kick start struggling European economies. Full story: European leaders take aim at Spain and Italy
RBS shares tumbled 11.5% on Thursday, after the Associated Press reported that the bank was being investigated in the Libor probe.