StockMarketWire.com - The FTSE 100 fell 0.3% to 6,918 as inflation reached its highest level since 2014.

However, the FTSE rallied 0.2% to 17,968.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil nudged 0.5% higher to $45.96 and Brent crude oil was 0.4% higher at $48.56 per barrel, respectively.

Gold glittered at $1,349 per ounce and copper was stable at $4,740 per tonne.

MAIN NEWS OF THE DAY

Reports of hints in Russia that OPEC is working on a deal to freeze oil production boosted commodity stocks, with Rio Tinto (RIO), Randgold Resources (RRS), Anglo American (AAL) and BHP Billiton (BLT) trading higher by up to 3.2%.

UK inflation came in higher than expected at 0.6% in July. The Office for National Statistics said the PPI measure of inflation rose to 3.3% in July, widely beating the expected 1%.

BLUE CHIP RISERS AND FALLERS

Miner Antofagasta (ANTO) gained 6.6% to 548p on earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rising to $571.6 million, as investors welcomed cost-cutting.

MID CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Construction group Balfour Beatty (BBY) secured a $697 million contract to help lay the foundations for high speed trains to operate between San Francisco and San Jose.

Hothschild Mining (HOC) impressed the market by announcing a dividend after returning to profit in the six months to 30 June, driven by strong production performance and cost controls. Shares were up 10.3% to 324.3p.

Piping systems manufacturer Polypipe (PLP) delivered further good news for dividend hunters after hiking its dividend by more than a third to 3.1p, following a 29% increase in pre-tax profit.

Investors focused on BGEO's (BGEO) lower net interest margin instead of its profit increase of 47.6% year-on-year, causing shares to slump 2.5%.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

W Resources (WRES) jumped 11.9% after ICD Alloys and Metals provided a forward sale contract facility for 1.2 million, with $200,000 of this facility already paid to W Resources.

Automotive retail and leasing group Marshall Motor (MMH) sped 5.6% higher to 160p on half-year results driven by like-for-like improvements and contributions from recent acquisitions.

Armadale (ACP) said geological mapping conducted at the high grade Mahenge Liandu graphite project in south-east Tanzania confirmed extensive areas of graphite mineralisation.

Oil and gas revenue plummeted by 48% to $3.5 million at Tethys Petroleum (TPL), which the company blamed on a natural decline in overall production and prolonged spring oil trucking disruption. Shares fell 16.7% to 1.2p.

PureTech Health (PRTC) said the US Patent and Trademark Office issued a patent, which is licensed worldwide to Vedanta under an agreement with the University of Tokyo, boosting shares by 4.9%.


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