London’s top flight index resumed its new year rally as it was cheered by encouraging data from both sides of the Atlantic.
America’s employers added 157,000 jobs last month, while figures for November and December were revised sharply higher, helping the FTSE 100 Index close 70.4 points higher at 6347.2. Significantly improved US manufacturing figures also helped sentiment on Wall Street, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average made strong early session gains.
Figures showing that output from the UK manufacturing sector rose last month at its fastest pace since September 2011, failed to prevent the pound from falling against the dollar to 1.57.
It was also down against the euro at 1.15 after both unemployment and inflation across the 17 European Union countries that use the euro was lower than anticipated.
The latest gains on the FTSE 100 follow falls on Thursday, but the top tier still saw the strongest January since 1989.
It has risen by more than 6% since the start of the year, with around £96bn added to the value of blue chip shares in January.
The biggest FTSE 100 risers were BT Group up 16.2p to 264.8p, Vedanta Resources ahead 55p to 1259p, Reed Elsevier 26.5p higher at 713.5p and Tullow Oil up 41p to 1179p.
The biggest FTSE 100 fallers were Tate & Lyle down 8.5p to 804p, Royal Bank of Scotland off 2.8p to 340.5p, BAE Systems 1.7p lower at 337.9p and Legal & General down 0.6p to 151.8p.