FTSE consolidates previous session's leap
LONDON (Reuters) - Top share index index was modestly higher in early trade on Thursday, consolidating a strong, late bounce in the previous session as investors focus on a two-day summit in Brussels that could shape the euro zone's future.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will pit herself against France and Italy at the summit starting on Thursday, insisting they must put the bloc's fundamental problems ahead of pleas for emergency action.
At 0811 GMT, the FTSE 100 .FTSE index was up 2.33 points, or 0.1 percent, at 5,526.25 points, having jumped 1.4 percent on Wednesday boosted by above-forecast U.S. durable goods orders and pending homes sales data which eased concerns over the global growth outlook.
Energy stocks .FTNMX0530 and miners .FTNMX1770 provided the main underlying support for the blue chips, reflecting firmer commodity prices after Wednesday's U.S. data boosted demand hopes.
Banks .FTNMX8350 were the main drag on sentiment, retreating after strong gains in the previous session, led by global heavyweight HSBC (HSBA.L), off 0.6 percent.
Household products firm Reckitt Benckiser (RB.L) was the top individual FTSE faller, down 1.9 percent as Credit Suisse downgraded its rating to "neutral".
(Reporting by Jon Hopkins; editing by Simon Jessop)
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