December 27, 2017 / 9:54 AM / 2 years ago

FTSE lifted by commodities while takeover approach boosts IWG

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* FTSE 100 index up 0.1 pct

* Miners and oil majors cement gains

* IWG soars after takeover approach

By Helen Reid

PARIS, Dec 27 (Reuters) - A rally in mining and energy stocks drove Britain’s FTSE 100 higher on Wednesday after a two-day holiday, while mid-cap trading was lit up by a 28 percent jump for IWG after the serviced office provider confirmed a takeover approach.

Investors cheered the news that IWG had received an all-cash approach from Canadian private equity firm Onex and Brookfield Asset Management.

The approach marks the latest venture by a foreign acquirer into British mid-caps, with deal prices having dropped because of the pound’s depreciation.

A profit warning that prompted a 7 percent share price tumble in October made IWG all the more attractively priced for a potential suitor. The stock was down 18 percent for the year at Friday’s close.

Britain’s FTSE 100 index gained 0.2 percent thanks to strong mining and oil stocks.

Miners Glencore, Rio Tinto, Anglo American and BHP Billiton delivered the biggest boost to the blue-chip index, rising by 1.4 to 1.8 percent as metals prices hovered near the 3-1/2 year highs they hit on a strong Chinese growth outlook.

Mid-cap miners Acacia Mining and Hochschild also made strong gains.

Gold producers Fresnillo and Randgold Resources were the top FTSE gainers, lifted by a rise in gold prices as the dollar softened.

Liquidity remained thin as holidays kept investors away from trading desks.

Tullow Oil gained 2.1 percent as oil prices stayed high, fresh from a rally that sent U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude above $60 for the first time since mid-2015.

Royal Dutch Shell gained 0.8 percent, boosted by the higher crude prices and the oil major’s assertion that the recently enacted U.S. tax reform would have a favourable impact on operations.

Shell became the latest in a string of European companies to forecast a beneficial impact from the U.S. tax overhaul, which includes a cut to the corporate tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent.

Barclays shares rose 0.4 percent despite the bank saying it expects to take a writedown of about 1 billion pounds ($1.34 billion) on its annual post-tax profit as a result of the tax reform. ($1 = 0.7458 pounds)

Reporting by Helen Reid; Editing by David Goodman

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