THE FTSE 100 index closed down yesterday despite a number of miners shaking off a volatile start to the day to close higher.
The index closed 0.14 per cent down at 6,126 points, even though gains were seen at companies including Glencore, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton, as well as Ashtead Group.
“It would appear that a weaker US dollar and a rebound in commodity prices have helped in this regard with platinum, copper and silver prices enjoying a rare positive day. Chinese iron ore prices did close at multi-year lows overnight, so we might see a rebound when Chinese markets reopen later,” said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets. He added: “Despite today’s rebound doubts still remain about the resilience of the BHP Billiton dividend given the company still has a number of unresolved issues including its involvement in the Samarco dam tragedy in Brazil, where its partner Vale is being sued by US investors in a New York court.”
Glencore closed 4.57 per cent up at 83.08p per share, while BHP Billiton ended the session 3.68 per cent up, and Rio Tinto rose 3.88 per cent. Antofagasta rose 1.11 per cent.
However, Anglo American lagged behind and Fresnillo also closed down. Anglo American shut 1.22 per cent down.
Fresnillo’s share price fell over eight per cent earlier in the day, but recovered some of the losses to close 0.9 per cent down. The company released a statement, stating there was a leak of water and chemicals at its gold and silver mine in Mexico.
Ashtead Group led the risers, ending the day 8.63 per cent up after yesterday posting strong first half results.
“The interim dividend is up 33 per cent, with the prospect of more good news for investors as the group now expects its full-year figures to be ahead of previous forecasts,” AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould said in a note.
With oil prices not plummeting as previously, BP, BG Group and Royal Dutch Shell gained. BP shut 0.76 per cent up, while BG’s share price ended 2.46 per cent up and Royal Dutch Shell rose 1.67 per cent.
In the FTSE 250, Entertainment One’s share price rebounded 16.47 per cent after the company responded to Tuesday’s sell off.
Meanwhile, Stagecoach dropped 14.43 per cent per share after a profit warning in the wake of the Paris attacks last month.