* FTSE 100 edges up, outperforms DAX and CAC
* Weak French and German data hits European markets
* UK economy by contrast has been an outperformer
* British Land up on Bank of America Merrill Lynch upgrade
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, Aug 14 Britain's top equity index edged
up on Thursday, with traders saying the UK market was enjoying a
"flight to quality" as investors sold the German and French
markets following weak European economic data.
The blue-chip FTSE 100 index crept up 0.1 percent,
or 6.42 points, to 6,663.30 points in the first hour of trading.
Even though the gains were meagre, the FTSE nevertheless
beat falls of 0.3 percent on Germany's DAX and of 0.4
percent on France's CAC.
Data showed that Germany's economy shrank in the second
quarter while France again saw no growth.
The UK economy is set to grow faster than any other major
developed nation this year, according to the IMF.
"The euro zone is still deep in the mire, although the UK
economy is still showing some strong signs," Alpari chief market
analyst James Hughes said.
Among stocks leading the FTSE higher were property company
British Land, which rose 1.6 percent after Bank of
America Merrill Lynch raised its rating on the stock to "buy"
Some traders remained cautious, however.
The FTSE 100 hit a peak of 6,894.88 points in mid-May, which
marked its highest level since December 1999, but has since
retreated and is down 1.3 percent since the start of 2014 as
conflict rages in Ukraine and the Middle East.
"I still feel fairly cautious about the market. I might buy
into the FTSE if it falls to 6,500 points," Securequity sales
trader Jawaid Afsar said.
(Editing by Louise Ireland)