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Financial stocks remain in the spotlight

Financial stocks remain in the spotlight

Category: Investments

Updated: 04/08/2011
First Published: 04/08/2011

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Financial stocks remained firmly in the spotlight this week, as some of the UK 's banking giants announced their six month results.

Buys in total increased by 44% on last week as the FTSE 100 finished the week at 5,718, according to figures from TD Waterhouse.

Lloyds Banking Group was both the most bought and sold stock in the week to Tuesday 2 August ahead of its results which were announced today.

The part nationalised lender reported losses of £3.3 billion for the period, almost entirely driven by payments it will have to make to customers who were mis-sold payment protection insurance (PPI).

Barclays was not far behind, taking second spot in both the buys and sells tables.

"Analysts broadly welcomed Barclays' interim results, which were released on Tuesday, as they exceeded expectations, despite the company's profit having dropped 38% during the first half of the year, compared with the same period in 2010," said Darren Hepworth, trading and customer services director at the broker.

Pre-tax profits at the bank for the first half of 2011 totalled £2.6 billion, a fall of 33% from the same period last year.

Most of the bank's profits came from Barclays Capital, its investment banking arm.

Royal Bank of Scotland , which is set to report its own interim results tomorrow, dropped from third to fifth place in the buys table and remained in third position in the sells.

Away from the banks, Aviva surged to third place in the buys table in the week.

The spike in activity was driven by an expectation that the insurance giant would announce operating profits for the first six months of 2011 in excess of the £1.27 billion made in the same period last year.

Aviva announced operating profits of £1.38 billion for the first six months of 2011 today.

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