Shares in London open flat at 6,896 with miners making the early running ahead of a quiet day of trading with the US offline because of a Labour Day public holiday.

A speech by Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda overnight is the main talking point going into today’s session as the central bank chief talked up the potential for more unconventional monetary policy if the country fails to hit inflation targets.

Economic data to look out for includes a UK Services PMI report due out at 9.30 BST.

Gold, silver, copper and platinum all make small gains following the comments and, combined with a marginally weaker sterling against the close of trading on Friday, which now buys $1.33, gives miners a boost.

Iron ore specialists BHP Billiton (BLT) and Anglo American (AAL) are the biggest gainers, up 2.2% to £10.17 and 1.9% to 823p, respectively.

Rio Tinto (RIO) is not far behind, up 1.6% to £23.63.

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is the biggest drag of the FTSE 100, trading 2.9% lower at 198p. Military and commercial vehicle supplier GKN (GKN) is also down 1.9% at 328p.

Zoopla (ZPLA) is the biggest gainer among the mid caps, adding 6.4% to 326p as Barclays analysts upgrade their rating of the stock to 'overweight' from 'equal weight'.

Among the smaller companies, oil and gas exploration and development outfit Pantheon Resources (PANR:AIM) sinks 47% to 80p as it runs into difficulties in a horizontal drilling attempt at its second well on its acreage in Polk County, East Texas. Chief executive Jay Cheatham says the business will revert to vertical drilling, with both its number one and two wells encountering hydrocarbons.

Central Asia and Caspian-focused oil and gas producer Tethys Petroleum (TPL) falls 32% to 1.3p after it failed to secure a $9 million (£6.8 million) fund raising attempt with Olisol, an energy transportation business which previously said it would provide capital. Olisol is still advancing money to support working capital at Tethys, and provided $452,000 over the past few days.

Finally, investors don’t appear to be buying the positive spin 88 Energy (88E:AIM) is putting on a recent drilling effort in Alaska. Shares trade 23.% lower at 2.5p even though managing director Dave Wall describes the results as a ‘best of both worlds’ scenario after a revision to well design.

Issue Date: 05 Sep 2016