* FTSE 100 up 0.3 percent
* Greece passes budget but debt crisis rumbles on
* Investors hedge uncertainty with defensives
By Alistair Smout
LONDON, Nov 12 Britain's FTSE 100 edged higher
on Monday in thin volumes after the passage of a crucial Greek
budget vote on Sunday provided temporary relief but no long-term
solution to its debt crisis.
By 1141 GMT, the FTSE 100 was up 17.47 points, or
0.3 percent, at 5,787.15, opening the week with gains after
losing 1.7 percent last week.
"While there hasn't been much particularly good news in
terms of the euro zone, the market doesn't think there's been
any active bad news. In Greece the can is just going to be
kicked down the road," Mike Ingram, market analyst at BGC
The Greek parliament passed an austerity budget for 2013
late on Sunday, but the EU said it was not ready to authorise a
new loan tranche on Monday, maintaining a position first staked
out last week.
However, Athens was set to get two more years to achieve a
primary budget surplus.
Volumes were low, at 26 percent of their already weak 90-day
daily average, and were set to remain subdued with Veterans' Day
expected to affect trading in the United States. The weak
volumes also reflected the unwillingness of investors to take up
fresh positions in equities amid weak earnings and global
"If people were confident about where the market was going,
they would be voting with their feet, they would be putting cash
to work in the market, and they're just not doing that," Ingram
"People are just very cautious about where the euro zone is
going to take UK markets, I think that's keeping a lot of people
out on the sidelines because they don't feel they can actively
trade this market."
The index hit a two-month low on Friday, probing the 200-day
moving average level around 5,730, but after recovering that
session it traded in a tight 25 point range on Monday.
Banks led gains, adding 7.7 points to the index with Lloyds
adding 3.5 percent after three consecutive sessions of
On the whole, however, it was "defensive" stocks - companies
that tend to outperform in times of economic uncertainty - that
led the index higher.
British American Tobacco rose 1 percent, enough to
lead the index in points added to the index. Heavyweight
telecoms firm Vodafone, also liked for its dividend
attractions, added 0.3 percent.
An attractive dividend also boosted car insurance firm
Admiral, which gained 3.8 percent, continuing a
resurgence following a double upgrade by BofA/Merrill Lynch on
Friday who cited the firm's dividend yield of over 9 percent.
Among fallers, defence firm BAE Systems fell 1
percent as peer Cobham said it expected its revenues to
fall due to increasing pressures on the United States' defence
(Editing by Catherine Evans)