FTSE dragged lower by mining stocks
Blue chip shares in London were buoyed by gains from housebuilders Reuters

The London market lifted in afternoon trading driven by gains from housebuilders. The FTSE 100 Index jumped 43.6 points to 6872.1, after home builder Persimmon reported "robust trading", despite fears that the UK's vote to leave Europe would slow the residential property market.

The FTSE 250 Index was up 97.2 points to 17969.2.

The Yorkshire-based firm said half-year pre-tax profit to the end of June lifted 29% to £352.3m ($464.2m) compared to a year ago, as the numbers of potential home buyers visiting its sites rose by around 20%.

It added the number of homes it completed grew by 6% to 7,238 during the period, while average selling prices also lifted by 6% to £205,762.

Hargreaves Lansdown analyst George Salmon said Persimmon was in "rude health" adding that "cancellation rates are actually declining, and sales rates and visitor numbers up strongly".

Shares in property companies have been hit hard following the Brexit vote on June 23, but rose in this session.

In afternoon trading the biggest risers on the FTSE 100 Index were Barratt Developments (+18.2p to 481.7p), Persimmon (+69p to 1863p), Royal Bank of Scotland (+6.7p to 195p), Anglo American (+28.1p to 863.1p) and Tesco (+5.3p to 164.8p).

The biggest fallers on the FTSE 100 Index were Mediclinic International (-17p to 1069p), London Stock Exchange (-15p to 2872p), CRH (-13p to 2495p), Hikma Pharmaceuticals (-10p to 2302p) and Compass Group (-7p to 1488p).

In afternoon trading the biggest risers on the FTSE 250 Index were JRP Group (+15.4p to 103.6p), McCarthy & Stone (+12.4p to 192.4p), Grafton Group (+30.5p to 573p), Thomas Cook (+3.6p to 70p) and Kier Group (+56p to 1245p).

The biggest fallers on the FTSE 250 Index were Evraz (-4.4p to 139.2p), Synthomer (-6.5p to 371.1p), Card Factory (-4.5p to 276.8p), Moneysupermarket.com (-4.6p to 300.7p) and RIT Capital Partners (-26p to 1755p).