FTSE closes above 6,000 at 30-month high

(The UK stock market will be closed on Monday Dec. 27 and
Tuesday Dec. 28 for Christmas and will re-open on Wednesday,
Dec. 29)

* FTSE 100 up 0.2 pct, and up 8.5 percent this month

* Cyclicals stronger, but Randgold falls on update

* Defensive stocks rise in broad-based gains

By David Brett

LONDON, Dec 24 (BestGrowthStock) – Britain’s top shares closed above
the 6,000 level for the first time since June 2008 on Friday, as
UK equities looked set for their strongest December performance
since 1987.

The FTSE 100 (.FTSE: ) closed up 12.85 points, or 0.2 percent
at 6,008.92, albeit in wafer thin trade with the index having
traded just 7 percent of its average 90-day volume.

The index closed above 6,000 for the first time since June
3, 2008, and is up 8.4 percent so far this month, the strongest
December since 1987 when it rose 8.5 percent.

“The index turned around in the closing auction. Clearly the
lack of volume helped with the sudden rebound,” said Jimmy
Yates, head of equities at CMC Markets.

“There’s is plenty of Christmas cheer and goodwill out there
to see the index close above 6,000. Equities remain the
preferred asset class.”

Banks (.FTNMX8350: ), which had dragged back the FTSE in early
trade, turned flat shrugging off Europe’s debt concerns, while
mining and energy stocks (.FTNMX0530: ) rebounded higher as
investors’ appetite for risk showed no sign of abating.

Miners (.FTNMX1770: ), for example, have gained more than 13
percent in December.

But Randgold Resources (RRS.L: ) fell 4.3 percent after it
said fourth quarter production would be negatively hit by the
impact of the political tension in Ivory Coast. [ID:nLDE6BM1NI]

Defensive stocks, such as drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK.L: )
up 1.2 percent, were also in demand as the FTSE showed
broad-based gains.

Analysts warned there could be a correction in the near
term.

“While clearly this index is in a long-term uptrend,
short-term traders still feel it is vulnerable to a near-term
correction,” said Enis Mehmet at Autochartist

He said based on a short-term range of 5,857.33 to 6,000.55,
traders should watch for a possible correction into the
retracement zone at 5,928.94 to 5,912.04.

FTSE closes above 6,000 at 30-month high