Construction activity took an unexpected fall in August while the UK's trade deficit narrowed by less than forecast, adding to signs that the economy is losing momentum.
Glencore has slashed its production of zinc sending its shares soaring 12pc as it rolls out more measures to retune its business for a prolonged slump in commodities markets.
The Government has offloaded a further 1% stake in Lloyds Banking Group to City investors, reducing its holding in the bank to less than 11%.
Friday 12:30 BST. Global stocks are at seven-week highs and emerging market assets are rallying as a bounce in commodities helps investors recover their risk appetite after the late summer slump.
Yesterday's Bank of England October policy announcement resulted in the expected outcome whereby UK official rates were left unchanged following another 8-1 vote for so doing (Ian McCafferty was again the sole dissenter in favour of a hike).