UPDATE 1-Miners, energy stocks boost FTSE up from 14-month low

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
UPDATE 1-Miners, energy stocks boost FTSE up from 14-month low
Credit: © Reuters.

* FTSE 100 up 0.7 pct

* Miners, energy stocks rise

* Tesco leads supermarkets after completes acquisition,upgrade (Updates prices, adds detail)

By Kit Rees and Helen Reid

LONDON, March 5 (Reuters) - Britain's top share indexrecovered a little lost ground on Monday thanks to gains amongmining companies and commodity stocks which had been among theworst hit after U.S. President Trump threatened higher tariffson steel and aluminium imports.

The FTSE 100 .FTSE was up 0.7 percent at 7,103.30 pointsby 1008 GMT, in line with a broadly positive European market.However, the index remained close to its lowest level sinceDecember 2016, which it reached on Friday.

UK stocks also underperformed European peers with Germany'sDAX .GDAXI ending the day up 1.5 percent and the STOXX 600 .STOXX up 1.1 percent.

"The bounce for the FTSE is tepid at best," Mike van Dulken,head of research at Accendo Markets, said, adding that Brexitwas still hanging over the market following a speech by PrimeMinister Theresa May on Friday which failed to persuade manyinvestors that a deal with the European Union was any closer. materials and energy sectors added the most points tothe index, around 18 points collectively as oil prices advancedbefore a meeting between OPEC and U.S. shale firms. Metalsprices also firmed.

Shares in Royal Dutch Shell RDSa.L rose 0.8 percent whileBP BP.L gained 1.3 percent.

Miners Rio Tinto RIO.L and BHP Billiton BLT.L , whichboth have high exposure to iron ore, gained more than 1 percentand partially recovered some of the previous session's losseswhen steelmakers were hit by concerns around Trump's plans toput tariffs on steel and aluminium imports. the biggest gainers were housebuilding stocks, after aMay announced a draft policy to overhaul planning laws in a bidto free up more land for housebuilding to ease the country'shousing shortage. Homes BVS.L gained 4.5 percent, and Persimmon PSN.L rose 2.2 percent. Jefferies analysts said the changes toplanning laws were positive for housebuilder shares, which havefallen in recent months to their lowest in more than a year. .FTNMX3720

Shares in grocer Tesco TSCO.L rose 0.7 percent after thecompany completed its $5.5 billion takeover of Booker BOK.L ,with Jefferies raising its rating on the stock to a "buy". stocks have come under pressure from concernsaround an inflation squeeze on consumers and a price war broughton by discount food retailers.

"The obvious benefits of reducing input headwinds and of aless defensively minded consumer should provide a more helpfulbackdrop to grocers from here," analysts at Jefferies said in anote. "Whether this will be supercharged by more modestdiscounter openings remains to be seen, but we are hopeful,"Jefferies added, also upgrading Morrisons MRW.L to "buy".

Small-cap retailer Mothercare MTC.L however sank another10.8 percent, after a profit warning on Friday knocked 15percent off its share price. Initial RTO.L was a rare faller on the FTSE 100,down 4.4 percent. The pest control company's shares had theirworst day in 9 years last week after results. of the blue chips, Ultra Electronics ULE.L sank 10percent and hit a three-month low after the defence contractorterminated its $234 million acquisition of Sparton Corp SPA.N due to anti-trust concerns raised by the U.S. Department ofJustice. Stocks

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