Travel, Commodity Stocks Lift British Shares on Vaccine Optimism

Nov 23 (Reuters) – London stocks rose on Monday, extending their three-week rally, as travel and commodity stocks jumped after positive vaccine data from AstraZeneca, with hopes of a post Brexit-trade deal with European Union, also lifting the mood.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 index gained 0.3%, after drugmaker AstraZeneca Plc said its vaccine for the novel coronavirus, developed along with the University of Oxford, could be around 90% effective without any serious side effects.

Energy, mining and aero were among the biggest gainers on the index. The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 added 0.7% with travel and leisure stocks providing the biggest boost.

UK markets have already jumped more than 14% this month, after Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna’s vaccines’ showed similar responses in preventing COVID-19 based on interim data from a late-stage trial, raising hopes of a sooner-than expected recovery from the pandemic-driven recession.

Adding to the mood, British health minister said UK aims to rollout a COVID-19 vaccine before Christmas, with life getting back to normal after Easter.

(Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

Source: Reuters

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