- The FTSE 100 remained on the front foot despite a stronger pound after UK economic growth in the first quarter of 2018 was higher than expected at 0.2%.

Miners kept up their strong performance with Anglo American (AAL) rising 3.5% to £16.93 and BHP Billiton (BLT) gaining 1.1% to £17.06.

The FTSE 100 closed 0.3% higher at 7,636.

Brent crude oil jumped 2.3% to $79.64 per barrel.


In the US, investor sentiment was also strong with the Dow Jones rallying 1% to 24,461 around 5pm UK time.


BHP Billiton agreed to fund $211m to support the Renova Foundation, which was created to help victims of the Samarco dam disaster in Brazil via compensation programs.

Chemicals firm Elementis (ELM) fell 10.9% to 252.8p on a proposed $600m acquisition of industrial talc additives company Mondo Minerals and $280m rights issue.

Outsourcer Serco (SRP) slid 1.9% to 98.9p as the market overlooked a 20% expected rise in underlying trading profit and focused on lower sales in its first half.

Defence company BAE Systems (BA.) announced it will deliver its nine ship Future Frigate programme to the Royal Australian Navy. BAE said it will design, build and support the ships in a contract worth A$35bn, helping the stock rise 2.3% to 646.8p.


Low-cost African airline Fastjet (FJET) plans to raise at least $10m in a shares placing at a 146% premium to Thursday's closing price in a bid to keep the company running. Shares in the company soared 163% to 8.5p.

Action Hotels (AHCG) rallied 32.5% to 21.2p on a takeover offer at a 50% premium to Thursday's closing price from Action Group.

Elsewhere, Diversified Gas & Oil (DGOC) finalised a deal to acquire entities with certain gas and oil assets of EQT, which will be funded partially through a shares placing to raise $250m. Shares in the company jumped 24% to 119p as they emerged from suspension.

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