May 20, 2020 / 8:54 AM / 6 days ago

UPDATE 2-FTSE 100 lifted by Experian, recovery hopes persist

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* Data firm Experian records strong annual revenue

* Rolls-Royce rises on flagging job cuts

* M&S jumps on accelerating turnaround plan

* FTSE 100 up 1.1%, FTSE 250 adds 0.3% (Adds comments, updates prices to close)

By Shreyashi Sanyal

May 20 (Reuters) - London’s FTSE 100 index rose on Wednesday, rebounding from an early fall partly thanks to solid quarterly results from data firm Experian, while investors remained hopeful of a recovery after the looming new coronavirus-induced recession.

The world’s biggest credit data firm Experian Plc jumped 7.4% to a more-than-10-week high after it reported higher annual revenue.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 gained 1.1%, after falling as much as 0.7% earlier in the day. The mid-cap FTSE 250 added 0.3%, extending its rally to a fourth day.

The FTSE 100 has now recovered about 22% from its March lows as governments and central banks launched historic stimulus measures to aid businesses and families impacted by a near standstill in activity due to the pandemic.

“The market is taking notice of ongoing signs of potentially concrete fiscal response from the government,” said Will James, senior investment director, European equities at Aberdeen Standard Investments.

“There are signs now that suggest the government sees that the problem is serious and they are going to do something about it.”

Bolstering expectations of more Bank of England stimulus next month, data showed Britain’s inflation rate sank in April to its lowest since August 2016.

Rolls-Royce rose 2.3% after the company said it plans to cut at least 9,000 jobs, or more than a sixth of its workforce.

UK homebuilder Vistry Group Plc shed 4% on forecasting more job cuts as it consolidates the operations of Bovis Homes and construction company Galliford Try’s residential units.

But Playtech Plc surged 6% after posting a jump in first-quarter profit as its financial trading division benefited from increased market volatility and trading volumes.

Retailer Marks & Spencer Group Plc jumped 10.8% as it said it would accelerate its latest turnaround programme after reporting a 21% fall in annual profit. (Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Sagarika Jaisinghani in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Hugh Lawson)

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