The U.K.’s FTSE 100 advanced for an eighth straight day on Monday, with mining firms tracking metals prices higher and supermarket firms in the spotlight after a round of recommendation changes.
The benchmark index rose 0.5% to 6,654.20, adding to a 0.7% gain from Friday.
Analysts at Deutsche Bank said the U.K. food retail sector offers inexpensive exposure to the consumer recovery, but noted that the biggest companies in the sector have entered a period of structurally lower growth. The analysts cut Wm Morrison Supermarkets PLC to sell from hold, sending the shares 0.2% lower. The analysts kept Tesco PLC up 0.8%, at buy, and raised the price target on J Sainsbury PLC to 4.25 pounds from £3.70. Those shares rose 0.6% to £3.97.
Shares of Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC slid 5.3% in London after reports that J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Bank of America Corp. are close to agreeing to multibillion-dollar settlements with the Federal Housing Finance Agency over boom-era house loans. RBS was one of the biggest sellers of mortgage-backed securities to housing agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before the financial crisis.
Additionally, Chancellor George Osborne told the Daily Telegraph that the government could decide to split the bank within a matter of weeks.
Shares of Barclays PLC fell 1.1%.