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FTSE 100 to open near 6,600 on Friday

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Friday's trading is expected pick up pretty much where Thursday left off in London, with the FTSE 100 blue chip benchmark poised just below the 6,600 marker.

US stocks dipped in New York last night, stalling a streak of record highs, following comments from the Philadelphia Fed president indicated a preference for less stimulus.

The comments, which caused investor sentiment to waiver, came after the latest sign that America's economy is continuing to recover.

New figures from the US Labor Department on Thursday revealed unemployment claims are around five-year lows, and sackings are back at pre-crisis levels.

The Dow Jones was down slightly at 15,082, while the S&P 500 shed around 0.4% to 1,626 and the Nasdaq dipped 0.14% to 3,409.

Apple was among the big name fallers, losing nearly 1% in another tough trading session for trendy tech investors.

In Asia, Japanese stocks were stronger with the Nikkei advancing almost 3% to 14,580 as the yen strengthened against the dollar.

Meanwhile Hong Kong's Hang Seng dipped slightly, and the Shanghai Composite was trading marginally higher.

In London, spread betting firm IG Markets has tipped the FTSE 100 to open with a slight gain, up just a couple of points, at 6,596 to 6,601.

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