Shares in Cillit Bang-to-Dettol firm Reckitt Benckiser powered ahead after it flagged the potential £2.5 billion sale of its pharmaceuticals division.
The households products company gained 5.2% as it also cheered investors with a better-than-expected set of third quarter trading figures.
The London market gained during a big week for US and UK economic announcements. T he FTSE 100 Index built on cautious progress in recent sessions to stand 41.5 points higher at 6695.7.
US employment figures, which have been delayed due to the partial government shutdown, showed disappointing job creation, although unemployment dropped to its lowest level since November 2008.
The data is closely watched as an indicator of how likely the US Federal Reserve is to start tapering its massive programme of quantitative easing which has nursed the country to recovery.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Wall Street made a strong start as the data drove speculation that tapering may be some way off.
The pound continued to strengthen against the greenback, climbing to 1.62 dollars, but was down against the euro to 1.18.
Reckitt Benckiser was also handed a boost by figures showing revenues growth of 5% to £2.55 billion for the third quarter.
Its pharmaceuticals division posted lower revenues but this was offset by its announcement of a strategic review of this part of the business - with a sale expected to follow.
Investec analyst Martin Deboo said the review was welcome and implied a strong intent to sell the division, which has been valued at £2.5 billion.
He added that emerging markets were also holding up well, as shares climbed 234p to 4734p.
Reckitt was joined on the FTSE 100 risers board by mining giant BHP Billiton after it lifted its target for iron ore production in the current financial year. Shares were 77p higher at 1950.5p, up 4.1%.
Whitbread shares dipped despite another decent set of results from the owner of the Costa coffee chain and Premier Inn budget hotel business.
Costa maintained its recent record of strong growth as its half-year profits rose by a fifth and helped Whitbread's overall figure gain by 12% to £216.1 million.
Shares have risen by a third over the year to date but drifted lower - off 13p to 3359p - in the wake of the figures.
Elsewhere in the top flight, Royal Bank of Scotland recovered from the 5% fall seen in the previous session to stand 8.9p higher at 362p, or 2.5%.
However airline stocks were under selling pressure, with low-cost carrier easyJet down 22p to 1336p and British Airways owner International Airlines Group off 5.4p to 359p.
The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were Reckitt Benckiser up 234p to 4734p, BHP Billiton 77p higher to 1950.5p, Randgold Resources up 178p to 4665p and Fresnillo 28p higher to 1006p.
The biggest fallers on the FTSE 100 were ARM Holdings down 35p to 1004p, Sports Direct 13.5p lower to 706.5p, Persimmon down 23p to 1227p and easyJet off 22p to 1336p.