LONDON MARKETS: FTSE 100 Gain Held In Check As Miners Fall

By Carla Mozee, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

Carillion shares sink more than 30%

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U.K. stocks edged higher Monday, but losses for the mining sector limited the advance for the London blue-chip benchmark.

The FTSE 100 index was up 0.2% at 7,366.25, with financial, oil and gas and health care shares higher. The index on Friday rose 0.2%, but gained 0.5% last week, the largest weekly advance since late May.

Monday's session saw asset manager Schroders PLC (SDR.LN) at the top of the FTSE 100, rising 1.7%. Lender HSBC Holdings PLC (HSBA.LN) (HSBA.LN) moved 1.4% higher and educational materials publisher Pearson PLC (PSON.LN) picked up 1.4%.

But miners on Monday keyed off on losses in their Australian-listed shares "on account of a still weak oil price, another gold selloff and weakness among base metals even after solid China inflation data," said Accendo Markets in an early Monday note.

Read:China's consumer inflation remains steady in June (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/chinas-consumer-inflation-remains-steady-in-june-2017-07-09)

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In London, copper producer Fresnillo PLC (FRES.LN) fell 1.1%, Randgold Resources PLC (RRS.LN) (RRS.LN) shed 0.4% and Anglo American PLC (AAL.LN) stepped down 0.6%.

Prices for most metals swung lower Monday, with copper futures off 0.2%, while gold futures eased by 0.2%. Metals prices had been higher earlier "as the cooler Chinese inflation eased expectations of a further credit tightening in the world's biggest commodity consuming economy," said London Capital Group's senior market analyst Ipek Ozkardeskaya wrote.

Chinese consumer and producer prices were steady in June, meeting expectations. Mining shares can be sensitive to developments from China because it's a major buyer of industrial and precious metals.

The rise for the FTSE 100 was also supported by a steady pound, which was little changed on Monday. Sterling bought $1.2893, compared with $1.2887 late Friday in New York. The pound lost ground against the U.S. dollar on Friday after the U.S. jobs report for June was strong enough to support the case for the Federal Reserve's plan to gradually raise interest rates.

A stronger pound can clip shares of multinationals on the FTSE 100, as those company make the bulk of earnings and sales in overseas markets.

Meanwhile on the mid-cap FTSE 250 , Carillion PLC (CLLN.LN) plunged 33% as the construction and facilities services company warned that first-half operating profit will be lower than expectations. As well, the company said CEO Richard Howson has stepped down from his post and the board. Keith Cochrane will serve as interim CEO until a permanent replacement has been found.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 10, 2017 04:43 ET (08:43 GMT)