BlackRock backs Glencore-Xstrata

BlackRock yesterday came out in support of Glencore’s planned £21.3bn bid for Xstrata. The merger, which would create the world’s fourth-largest mining company, has been widely criticised with Standard Life, Schroders and Allianz Global all publicly coming out in opposition. But speaking in Hong Kong yesterday, fund manager Catherine Raw, who helps manage BlackRock’s World Mining Fund, said its natural resources team would accept the offer. “In terms of the natural resources team’s view, we see the joint entity as being a better solution for both companies,” she told Bloomberg. BlackRock is Xstrata’s second-biggest shareholder. Glencore, the largest publicly traded commodity supplier, already owns 34 per cent of Xstrata and agreed to buy the company for 2.8 of its shares for each one in Xstrata.