A flurry of US economic data and a rebound in metals prices helped push Britain&rsquo;s top share index to a higher close yesterday, with Compass Group topping the blue-chip gainers list after results.<br /><br />The FTSE 100 ended up 40.85 points, or 0.8 per cent at 5,364.81, following a 0.6 per cent decline on Tuesday.<br /><br />Miners added the most points to the index with <strong>Randgold Resources</strong> among the biggest blue-chip gainers, up 3 per cent, after the price of gold hit a record high and prices of key base metals advanced. Also featuring on the FTSE 100 leader board were <strong>Lonmin, BHP Billiton, Anglo American and Antofagasta</strong>, which added 2.5 to 3.2 per cent.<br /><br />&ldquo;Recently any pullback has been met by further buying, so the momentum is still in favour of the bulls,&rdquo; said <strong>Angus Campbell</strong>, head of sales at Capital Spreads.<br /><br />&ldquo;We&rsquo;re in a bullish time of year. Out of the last 10 years, on eight occasions the market has risen in the run-up to Thanksgiving (today), and then after Thanksgiving, on average there have been more rises than falls.&rdquo;<br /><br />The FTSE has surged 55 per cent since hitting a low in March, and gains so far in November have put the index on track to post its best monthly performance since August.<br /><br />Pharmaceuticals, seen as resistant to a weak economy, were higher. <strong>AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline</strong> and <strong>Shire</strong> added 1.4 to 2.5 per cent.<br /><br />As crude prices gained by more than 1 per cent, energy stocks found favour. <strong>BP</strong> and <strong>BG Group</strong> put on 0.5 and 1.3&nbsp; per cent, respectively.<br /><br /><strong>Royal Dutch Shell</strong> climbed 0.4 per cent. Its chief executive forecast that the oil giant will not need to borrow any more money if oil remains at about $80 a barrel.<br /><br /><strong>Compass</strong>, the world&rsquo;s top caterer, showed its recession-proof credentials, posting a 33 per cent profit rise which topped market expectations and propelled its shares to a seven-year high, up 6.1 per cent. <br /><br /><strong>International</strong> <strong>Power</strong> gained 2.5 per cent, with traders citing renewed speculation of M&amp;A activity after the <strong>Daily</strong> <strong>Mail</strong> said <strong>GDF</strong> <strong>Suez</strong> was a possible bidder for the British power generation firm.<br /><br />On the downside, hedge fund <strong>Man</strong> <strong>Group</strong> shed 4.9 per cent, the biggest faller on the index, in a further reaction to Tuesday&rsquo;s rating downgrade by <strong>Credit</strong> <strong>Suisse</strong> and with the stock trading ex-dividend yesterday.<br /><br />Ex-dividend factors knocked 1.01 points off the blue chip index.<br /><br />Platinum refiner <strong>Johnson</strong> <strong>Matthey</strong> was another significant faller, off 3.9 per cent after posting a 21 per cent drop in first-half pretax profit due to lower precious metal prices and a slowdown in automobile sales. <br /><br /><strong>London Stock Exchange</strong> was on the back foot after it posted results, falling 3.8 per cent