August 5, 2014 / 8:30 AM / 3 years ago

Aggreko boosts Britain's FTSE as Ukraine, Gaza tensions ease

* FTSE 100 up 0.4 pct
    * Aggreko, Standard Life boosted by earnings reports
    * Meggitt cuts outlook after U.S. military spending drop

    By Alistair Smout
    EDINBURGH, Aug 5 (Reuters) - Britain's top share index rose
early on Tuesday, boosted by encouraging earnings data as
tensions eased in political hotspots that have weighed on the
market in recent weeks. 
    Aggreko, which supplies power to public events,
rose 4.1 percent after profits fell 9 percent, which traders
said beat expectations.
    "You've heard them grumble a bit about currency headwinds,
and I think the fact that their order book for the second half
of the year is a little more sterling-based helps optimism for
the rest of the year," Alastair McCaig, analyst at IG, said.
    The company said it expected full year profits to be similar
to last year's figure.
    Standard Life rose 2.3 percent after just beating
expectations, with profits lifted by the enrolment of workers
into new company pension schemes. 
    On the FTSE 100, 85 percent of companies that have
reported results so far have beaten or met expectations,
compared to 57 percent on the STOXX Europe 600.
    The British index was up 28.06 points, or 0.4 percent, at
6,705.58, by 0800 GMT.
    But aircraft parts supplier Meggitt fell 7.3
percent after cutting its revenue growth outlook for the second
time in nine months. It was hit by bigger than expected declines
in U.S. military spending in the first half. 
    The FTSE 100 fell 1.7 percent last week, affected by the
crises in Ukraine and Gaza.
    Both fronts were relatively calm on Tuesday, with Kiev in
talks with Moscow over the return of Ukrainian soldiers that had
crossed into Russia, and Israel withdrawing troops from Gaza as
a 72-hour truce began.  

 (Reporting by Alistair Smout, editing by John Stonestreet)

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