The economic data on Wednesday were mostly good.
In the UK, the unemployment rate fell to 8.0 percent in the three months to June, the lowest level in nearly a year, and claims for jobless benefit fell by 5,900 in July.
In the US, reports on Wednesday showed that the consumer price index was unchanged in July even as industrial production rose 0.6 percent. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo reported that its confidence index rose to 37, the highest since February 2007.
Not so positive though was a report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York showing that the Empire State Index for manufacturing in the region fell to minus 5.9 in August from 7.4 last month.