The FTSE 100 crested back toward record highs Friday, boosted by multinationals such as miners, as the British pound hovered at the fresh 31-year low it hit in a volatile Asian session.
As other European indexes logged losses, the FTSE 100 UKX, +0.14% rose 0.6% to close at 7,044.39. That took the benchmark’s weekly gain to 2.1%, having flirted with its record close of 7,103.98 earlier this week on a weaker pound due to Brexit worries.
The pound rebounded somewhat during European trading hours, fetching around $1.2418, after crashing as low as $1.1789 in early Asian trade. It was positioned around $1.2600 before the selloff.
Analysts said it was difficult to pinpoint the cause for the move as it came during hours of low liquidity. Some attributed the move to a so-called “fat finger trade,” while others pointed to late Thursday comments from French President François Hollande, who urged fellow European leaders take a tough stance over Brexit negotiations.