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U.K. Stocks Advance; WPP Climbs as Revenue Beats Targets

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Aug. 26 (Bloomberg) -- U.K. stocks climbed on their first trading day after a national holiday, helped by increases in WPP Plc and RSA Insurance Group Plc.

WPP advanced 1.4 percent after reporting better-than-expected revenue. RSA climbed 1.6 percent after Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch recommended buying the stock. Antofagasta Plc fell 1.2 percent after posting a drop in profit.

The FTSE 100 Index added 47.51 points, or 0.7 percent, to 6,822.76 at the close in London. European stocks jumped to their highest level this month yesterday after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi signaled policy makers are ready to add stimulus. U.K. markets were closed for a national bank holiday. The broader FTSE All-Share Index climbed 0.7 percent today, while Ireland’s ISEQ Index gained 0.8 percent.

WPP advanced 1.4 percent to 1,244 pence. The world’s largest advertising agency said revenue rose 2.7 percent to 5.47 billion pounds ($9.07 billion). That beat analysts’ estimate for sales of 5.13 billion pounds.

RSA climbed 1.6 percent to 444 pence. Bank of America raised its rating to buy from neutral, saying the insurer has cleaned up its balance sheet and improved disclosures and management.

Antofagasta dropped 1.2 percent to 778.5 pence to its lowest price since July 2. Net income dropped 16 percent to $330.8 million in the first half of the year, the mining company said in a statement. Sales slid 4.2 percent to $2.67 billion.

To contact the reporter on this story: Inyoung Hwang in London at ihwang7@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Cecile Vannucci at cvannucci1@bloomberg.net Srinivasan Sivabalan

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