FTSE 100 recovers ground lifted by Direct Line

Domino's Pizza bikes Image copyright PA

The UK's main share index staged a late recovery to close slightly higher, having traded down for most of the session.

Lifted by the insurer Direct Line, the FTSE 100 closed up 11.49 points at 6,829.2.

On the FTSE 250, Domino's Pizza rose 3.2% after it said it planned to open an extra 400 stores in the UK.

The pizza delivery firm has pushed up its long-term target for the number of UK stores to 1,600 from 1,200.

"Our continued strong e-commerce performance and our collaboration with our dedicated franchisees, enable us to increase our UK presence significantly," said chief executive David Wild.

However, fellow FTSE 250 company Countrywide saw its shares dive 12% after it warned that its full-year profits were set to be at the low end of expectations.

The UK's largest estate agency said the number of transactions in the market was "significantly below" last year, with activity hit since the EU referendum and changes to stamp duty.

It added that transaction numbers in 2017 were "likely" to be lower than this year.

On the currency markets, the pound rose was flat against the dollar at $1.2449, and against the euro it was little changed at €1.1785.