London stocks inch higher, pub operator Mitchells jumps after results

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The London Stock Exchange Group offices are seen in the City of London, Britain, December 29, 2017. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

(Reuters) – UK shares crept up for a fourth session on Thursday after an extended rally in mining stocks and a jump in pub group Mitchells offset losses as certain heavyweight stocks traded ex-dividend.

The blue-chip index gained 0.2% by 0814 GMT, with the industrial metal and mining index rising as iron ore prices rallied on hopes of rebound in Chinese demand. [IRONORE/] [MET/L]

However, gains in the index were held back by near 4% declines in Vodafone (LON:) and Imperial Brands (LON:) as they traded without entitlement for dividend.

Mitchells & Butlers (LON:) jumped 5.9% after it reported like-for-like sales in recent months that exceeded pre-pandemic levels but warned that rising costs, supply chain issues and labour shortages since Brexit will “inevitably” have an impact on its performance in the current year.

Topping the mid-cap index, Vivo Energy surged 18.9% on news that commodities trader Vitol will buy the company in a deal valued at roughly $2.3 billion.

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