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Miners lift FTSE after China data boost

Miners lift FTSE after China data boost

Mining stocks helped to lift the FTSE 100 after data from top metals consumer China showed factory activity expanded at its fastest pace in five months in May.

Among the top risers contributing to an 18 point jump to 6,892 in the FTSE 100 were:

  • Anglo American (AAL) up 32.5p, or 2.4%, at £14.92
  • Rio Tinto (RIO) up 57.5p, or 1.9%, at £31.14
  • Antofagasta (ANTO) up 11p, or 1.4%, at 799.5p
  • BHP Billiton (BLT) up 21.5p, or 1.2%, at £18.90
  • Randgold Resources (RRS) up 44p, 1%, at £44.01

The rise for miners followed the release of purchasing managers' index (PMI) figures for May, showing a rise to 50.8 from 50.4 in April, beating market expectations of 50.6. A reading of above 50 shows expansion.

'The PMI reading continued to improve in May, indicating that a trend of economic stabilisation is becoming more evident,' said Zhang Liquin, a researcher at the Development Research Centre.

The advance by miners helped to pare some of their losses on Friday, when worries over growth in China were sparked by efforts by authorities to speed up local government spending in a bid to meet growth targets.

AstraZeneca (AZN) was another riser, after the pharmaceutical giant unveiled new results from its experimental cancer treatments.

Speaking at a Chicago conference at the American Society of Clinical Oncology, AstraZeneca chief executive Pascal Soriot said the products – two targeting ovarian caner and a lung cancer drug – had 'a very good chance to make it', according to reports

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