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* Diploma PLC surges on strong results
* M&S rises on media report of buyout by PE firm
* BT Group and Vodafone join EU telecoms rally
* FTSE 100 up 0.4%, FTSE 250 off 0.3%
Nov 22 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 snapped a four-day
losing streak on Monday driven by gains in heavyweight mining
and financial stocks, while deal-making activity in the European
telecoms sector boosted shares in Vodafone and BT Group.
The blue-chip index closed 0.4% higher, bouncing
back from a three-week low hit last week.
London-listed Chilean copper miner Antofagasta
jumped 5% to the top of the FTSE 100 after hard-right former
congressman Jose Antonio Kast topped the first-round of Chile's
presidential election, clearing up some political uncertainty.
Other base-metal miners also rose 1.7%, while
the rate-sensitive bank share index gained 1.4%
to provide the biggest boost to the index.
Traders' focus remained firmly on whether or not the Bank of
England (BoE) will raise interest rates at its December meeting
against the backdrop of surging inflation.
Meanwhile, sentiment was also bolstered after U.S. President
Joe Biden picked Jerome Powell to continue as Federal Reserve
chair, in a move welcomed as a signal of stability by global
"Powell's renomination removes a potential negative from the
markets and provides the certainty that investors crave. Powell
is sound, tested, respected and familiar to markets," said
George Ball, chairman of Sanders Morris Harris, an investment
firm based in Texas, United States.
Bogged down by inflationary pressures and supply chain
problems, the FTSE 100 has gained just 13.5% this year,
underperforming its European and U.S peers.
Meanwhile, the domestically focussed mid-cap FTSE 250 index
ended 0.3% lower, dragged down by a 27.2% drop in shares
of Hochschild Mining over uncertainty related to
operational extensions of its flagship Inmaculada mine in Peru.
BT Group and Vodafone rose 2.5% and 3.2%,
respectively, in a broad sector rally after U.S. fund KKR
proposed to take Italy's Telecom Italia
Marks and Spencer added 2%, after a media report
that U.S. investment firm Apollo Global Management is mulling a
buyout of the retailer.
Diploma Plc climbed 8% after the technical products
and services provider forecast 10% growth in reported revenue
for its 2021/22 financial year.
(Reporting by Bansari Mayur Kamdar in Bengaluru; Editing by
Uttaresh V, Shailesh Kuber and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)