* FTSE 100 up 0.1 pct
* Kingfisher slumps after reporting slowdown in trading
* Reed Elsevier rises after forecast-beating results
* Buy FTSE on the dip - Securequity sales trader
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, July 24 Britain's main equity index
climbed higher on Thursday, as gains at media company Reed
Elsevier more than offset a slump in home improvements
The blue-chip FTSE 100 index rose by 0.1 percent, or
8.97 points, to 6,807.12 points by the middle of the trading
Reed Elsevier rose 3.2 percent after reporting first-half
earnings that beat market expectations.
However, Kingfisher slumped 7.5 percent after it suffered a
sharp slowdown in trading in June.
Weak corporate results have helped push down the FTSE over
the last month from earlier peaks, with the index still down
about 1.3 percent from its May peak of 6,894.88 points, which
marked its highest level since December 1999.
However, Securequity sales trader Jawaid Afsar backed using
days when the market fell to add to equity positions as he felt
the FTSE should hit a record level of 7,000 points later this
year, helped by the UK's strengthening economy.
"Even with thin volumes, the market has been well supported
down at the lower levels. The probability of a breakout to the
upside is growing," said Afsar.
Kyri Kangellaris, managing director at Strand Capital, said
clients with more short-term positions should look to sell out
of the FTSE at the 6,850 point level for a profit, but buy back
into it if the FTSE fell back down to the 6,750 point level.
(Additional reporting by Alistair Smout; Editing by Andrew