FTSE 100 pushes up to record close on resources

London blue chips levered their way to a record close on the back of hearty gains among mining and oil majors, with a supporting cast of telcos, financials and supermarkets providing an additional boost.

FTSE 100 close up 53.11 points, or 0.75%, to 7097.50, surpassing an earlier closing high on Oct. 4 and trumping those all the way back to at least April 1984. FTSE 250 was down, however, by 16.26, or 0.09%, to 17,978.9.

Mining titan BHP Billiton (BLT) guided the pack with a 2.8% surge to 1267p, and was chased by Anglo American (AAL), up 2.11% to 1042.5p. Rio Tinto (RIO), up 2.09% to 2732.5p, will reduce its gross debt by $1.5 billion under cash tender offers announced on 26 September 2016.

Randgold Resources (RRS) slipped 0.14% to 7065p as it said it was disappointed the Malian government had escalated their long-running tax dispute to the extent of closing the group's offices in the country's capital Bamako.

Among the oil majors, Shell (RDSA) added 2.3% to 2116p, while BP (BP.) rose 1.74% to 494.45p. At 5.07pm, WTI crude was up 2.99% to $51.3/bbl and Brent was up 2.5% to $53.23/bbl. Both benefited as Russia said it was ready to joint OPEC in limiting crude output. Gold added 0.77% to $1261.6/oz.

Also on the up were supermarkets after M&S (MKS), rising 1.4% to 321.45p, and multiple lenders behind HSBC (HSBA), gaining 0.86% to 624.8p. Pharmas put in a good showing, as did several high-street retailers and insurers. Blue-chip risers outnumbered fallers 60 to 40, with resources making standout gains but others performing less markedly.

To the downside the story was won of house builders. Persimmon (PSN) guided with a slip of 2.97% to 1701p, and Taylor Wimpey (TW.), falling 2.64% to 143.8p. Airlines, commercial property and utilities were notably on the back foot.

Investor sentiment remains susceptible to any updates on a potential 'hard Brexit' because of its potential impact on the UK economy.


InnovaDerma (IDP) expects FY revenue and profits will be significantly higher than the previous year, driven by underlying organic growth across its product range and the contribution of the Skinny Tan business. Its shares soared 216.67% to 237.5p.

Eurasia Mining (EUA), up 104.76% to 1.07p, said an Engineering Procurement, Construction and Commissioning turnkey contract has been signed in relation to its Monchetundra project in the Kola peninsula in northwest Russia bordering Finland.

Richoux (RIC), up 41.86% to 30.5p, said Jonathan Kaye is to be appointed as CEO. He is the founder and former CEO of Prezzo Plc. Petards (PEG), up 17.74% to 18.25p, has won a contract to supply Great Western Railway with its eyeTrain systems.


Thalassa (THAL), up 8.22% to 39.5p, said WGP Survey Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of WGP Group Ltd (WGP), has made further sales of the multi client data acquired with TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company ASA in 2014.

red24 (REDT), up 6.52% to 24.5p, has recommended an all-cash acquisition under which iJET will acquire the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of the company. Shareholders in red24 will receive 26p a share, a price valuing its issued capital at about £13.1m.

SVG Capital (SVI), up 5.16% to 703p, said it has received no offer from HarbourVest Bidco for the Asset Purchase Alternative. It continues to believe that HarbourVest Bidco's final cash Offer of 650p per share undervalues the company and urged shareholders to take no action.

Blur Group (BLUR), up 2.44% to 5.25p, announces a major addition to its online Marketplace allowing organisations to source goods alongside business services for the first time.

William Hill (WMH), up 1.63% to 299.4p, and Amaya Inc note recent press speculation and confirm they are in discussions regarding a potential all share merger of equals.

Digital Barriers (DGB), up 1.61% to 47.25p, confirms a strategic partnership with G4S, a global, integrated security company specialising in the delivery of security and related services.

Other stocks in the news included MySQUAR (MYSQ), 7digital (7DIG), Ultra Electronics (ULE), Unite Students (UTG), Surface Transforms (SCE), YouGov (YOU), GCP Infrastructure (GCP), Earthport (EPO), Vedanta (VED), Corero Network Security (CNS) and Premier African Minerals (PREM).