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* Unilever gains after strong Nestle earnings
* Consumer price inflation slowed in September
* Deliveroo up after forecast lift
* FTSE 100 up 0.1%, FTSE 250 off 0.4%
Oct 20 (Reuters) - London's FTSE 100 edged higher on
Wednesday, helped by gains in consumer companies and data
showing a modest easing in domestic inflation, although a slide
in mining stocks capped the advance.
Reversing an earlier fall of 0.25%, the blue-chip FTSE 100
index scraped into positive territory to close 0.1%
higher, with consumer staples stocks including Diageo,
Unilever and British American Tobacco among
The UK mining index fell 1.2% in its worst
session in two-weeks as industrial metals prices fell on China's
pledge to bring down coal prices amid an energy squeeze in the
Rio Tinto, the world's biggest iron ore miner
dropped 3.3% after it raised its capital spending plans
for next year and announced a $7.5 billion plan to reduce carbon
emissions by 50% by 2030.
UK consumer prices rose 3.1% in annual terms in September,
slowing unexpectedly from 3.2% in August and falling short of
the 3.2% estimated by a Reuters poll of economists.
Still, investors feared that the unexpected slowdown was
only a temporary relief as prices of most other consumer goods
and services continued to rise, while food prices fell more
slowly than in September last year.
"The miss in UK CPI inflation is most likely down to base
effects and the end of the 'Eat Out to Help Out' scheme in
August last year," said Adam James Seagrave, global head of
sales trading at Saxo Markets, referring to a government scheme
to encourage diners back to restaurants.
"We expect the number to rise again next month, but it's
worth noting that a lot of the factors pushing on the upside are
non-core like food, travel and housing."
The mid-cap index was down 0.4%, with travel stocks
such as TUI, EasyJet and Wizz Air
underperforming again amid fears of a new wave of COVID-19
Deliveroo rose 3.8% after it lifted its full-year
growth forecast and reported a jump in the gross value of its
orders in the third quarter.
British consumer goods company Unilever rose 0.8%
after rival Nestle upgraded its full-year growth
outlook based on coffee and pet food sales.
(Reporting by Bansari Mayur Kamdar, Shashank Nayar, Sruthi
Shankar and Amal S, additional reporting by Medha Singh; Editing
by Anil D'Silva, Uttaresh.V, Ramakrishnan M, Kirsten Donovan)