Losses on London’s blue chip index were stemmed after banking shares were given a lift by news regulators will give them more time to build up their cash buffers.
The initial deadline of 2015 to meet global liquidity standards was put back by four years after banks argued that they would be restricted from lending to the wider economy.
Barclays shares rose nearly 4% but the wider London market closed lower as investors locked in profits following a recent strong run. The FTSE 100 Index, which set a new 17-month high last week, was 25.3 points lower at 6064.6.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average also opened lower as attention turned from the last minute deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, to pessimism about fourth quarter earnings.
The pound was up against the US dollar, at 1.60, but down against the euro, at 1.22, amid signs of an improvement in investor confidence in the eurozone.
The biggest FTSE 100 risers were Barclays up 10.5p to 287.2p, Meggitt ahead 6.3p to 412.8p, Eurasian Natural Resources 4.6p higher at 309.2p and Lloyds Banking Group up 0.6p to 50.5p.
The biggest FTSE 100 fallers were National Grid down 17p to 694p, Centrica off 7.1p to 333.9p, Polymetal International 23p lower at 1151p and Fresnillo down 35p to 1775p.