The benchmark FTSE 100 index reached 6960 points in morning trade
London - AFP
London's stock market hit a record high Friday, rounding off a successful week for European indices thanks to a deal on Greece's bailout and positive company results.
The benchmark FTSE 100 index reached 6,960 points in morning trade, its highest intra-day level on record. Around midday, it stood at 6,941.1 points, down 0.12 percent.
Frankfurt's DAX 30, which has also been hitting highs this week, inched up 0.09 percent to 11,337 points. In Paris the CAC 40 gained 0.28 percent to 4,924.1 compared with Thursday's close.
The euro climbed to 1.1227 from 1.1198 late in New York on Thursday.
"Despite the DAX and FTSE 100 having posted several new all-time highs in the past few days. . . many are convinced that markets have still further to go especially as the tensions in Eastern Ukraine appear to be easing a bit and Greece’s 'loan extension' has been secured," said Markus Huber, senior analyst at brokers Peregrine & Black.
The UN Security Council scheduled an emergency session to discuss the fragile ceasefire in Ukraine on Friday, a year to the day since Russian troops and pro-Moscow forces began seizing ports and cities on the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea.
The anniversary of the seizure, which triggered the worst standoff in East-West relations since the Cold War, came as the shaky truce between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels appeared to be holding.
In Greece, the main stock index fell 4.5 percent Friday amid uncertainty over the hard-left government's reform plans and its ability to meet its financing needs.
The parliament in Germany, Europe's largest economy and effective paymaster, on Friday overwhelmingly backed a four-month extension of Greece's bailout programme by international creditors.
The "yes" vote -- which came despite widespread scepticism in Germany over whether Athens will repay its debts -- was expected after Chancellor Angela Merkel's left-right "grand coalition" and small opposition parties all voiced support.
On the corporate front, shares in British Airways owner IAG jumped 2.95 percent to 576 pence after reporting surging annual profits thanks to sliding fuel prices and a turnaround at its Spanish carrier Iberia.
"IAG is leaving other airlines in its slipstream after confidently upping 2015 targets -- its solid run comes in the wake of problems for other European flag carriers," said Lewis Sturdy, dealer at London Capital Group
"The stock is up around 80 percent since last summer, a stunning run, and momentum is in its favour."
Lloyds Banking Group meanwhile rose 0.60 percent to 78.97 pence after the state-rescued lender posted its first annual profit since a 2008 bailout by the British government, edging it closer to a return to full private ownership.
In Paris, Airbus Group surged 7.0 percent to 55.29 euros after its net profit soared in 2014 thanks to record deliveries of passenger jets, while it expects revenue and operating profits to climb further this year.
German chemicals giant BASF slid 2.72 percent to 84.65 euros after the company said the outlook for 2015 was uncertain, in part owing to volatile oil prices.