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Stock Watch.

The UK's leading blue chip shares returned to winning ways on Thursday as the FTSE 100 stormed to an intraday high at close of day being 4753.4, 34 points better off. With the US markets shut for Thanksgiving Day it was left to an array of upbeat UK company news to propel the FTSE higher.

North-East Banking stock Northern Rock was one of the day's major success stories, reversing from an intraday low of 700.5p to finally close 18.5p stronger at 723.5p as investors reacted positively to news of a trading statement on Tuesday.

Supermarket giant Tesco was another notable climber, surging 10.75p to 308.75p as the firm's third-quarter earnings figures beat forecasts.

The heavyweight Oil & Gas sector provided further upward momentum with BP climbing 11.5p to 548p and Shell adding 12.25p to 448.75p on the back of continued strength in the price of crude oil.

Bronwyn Huddleston Associate Director ( Investment Manager Gerrard Ltd.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Nov 26, 2004
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