FTSE 100 Index on Course for Its Best Monthly Performance since May

U.K. shares reversed higher on Tuesday, boosted by a jump in shares of BP PLC which soared after upbeat quarterly results. The FTSE 100 index added more than 0.3 percent to trade at 7,512.70 following a decline of 0.2 percent in the previous session.

The stock benchmark index looked set to advance by 1.6 percent for October, which would be the biggest monthly gain since May. Leading the overall performance were the oil and gas and utility sectors as investors were scrutinizing another round of earnings reports. Indeed, shares of BP PLC soared more than 3.1 percent to trade at 518.60 – the highest level since July 2014.

BP, which is the FTSE 100’s fourth-largest constituent, announced that it would restart its share buyback program thanks to strong cash generation so far this year. BP also reported a healthy set of third-quarter profits with replacement cost profit (a number similar to the net income that U.S. companies report) of $1.87 billion, beating analysts’ projections of $1.58 billion.

Market participants are paying highly attention to Bank of England monetary policy meeting scheduled to be held on Thursday. Economists expect BOE Governor Mark Carney and other policy makers to raise the key rate by a quarter-percentage point to 0.5% after signals of rate hikes which came amidst concern over low unemployment and upward inflation pressure. Carney is due to hold a press conference after the meeting.

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