Asian shares hit record highs after new all-time highs on Wall Street, boosted by economic recovery hopes
Other European stock markets are also pushing higher in early trading.
Shares in London have opened higher. The FTSE 100 index has risen 26 points, or 0.42%, to 6,885 after the opening bell. The housebuilders Barratt and Taylor Wimpey are the biggest risers, trading 4.5% and 2.4% higher respectively, after Barratt issued an upbeat trading update.
Barratt, Britain’s biggest house builder, sold 9,077 homes in the six months to December, up from 8,314 a year earlier. It said demand was lifted by the introduction of the stamp duty cut and the help to buy programme, both of which are due to end in March.