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FTSE 100 climbs as Shell hikes investor payouts

·Senior City Correspondent, Yahoo Finance UK
·3-min read
British-Dutch oil and gas company Royal Dutch Shell PLC sign , commonly known as Shell is seen on September 14, 2020 in Warsaw, Poland. (Photo by Aleksander Kalka/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Shell said it would increase payouts to shareholders from its second quarter. Photo: Aleksander Kalka/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The FTSE 100 (^FTSE) jumped higher on Wednesday, boosted by rallying oil and mining stocks.

The FTSE was up 0.4% by mid-afternoon in London. The index was initially boosted by Royal Dutch Shell (RDSB.L) before surging mining stocks took over the lead.

The oil major rose over 2% in early trade after announcing plans to hike payouts to shareholders later this month. Shell said it would increase distributions to between 20% and 30% of cashflow from its operations thanks to a rebound in its core business and an improving outlook. The stock pulled back to trade up just 0.9% by mid-afternoon.

Rival BP (BP.L) initially rallied on the back of Shell's announcement but lost momentum as the session wore on. Both stocks were hit by volatility in oil prices. Brent futures (BZ=F) were up 1.5% in early trade but had dropped back to a gain of just 0.5% by mid-afternoon. Brent contracts were changing hands at $74.96 a barrel.

Mining and resources stocks were in demand in London. Anglo American (AAL.L) led the FTSE leaderboard with a gain of over 3%. BHP (BHP.L) rose 2.8%, Rio Tinto (RIO.L) was 2.2% higher, and steel business Evraz (EVR.L) rose 2%.

Wise staged a successful direct listing on the London Stock Exchange (LSEG.L) in one of the biggest listings in years. The online money transfer business was valued at around £8bn in the debut, making it London's biggest ever tech listing and the biggest debut on the main market since Glencore (GLEN.L) in 2011.

Stocks were catching bids on the continent. France's CAC 40 (^FCHI) was up 0.2% and the German DAX (^GDAXI) rose 1.1%. Demand for resources helped the German index too, with Heidelberg Cement (HEI.DE) shooting up 4.6%.

Wall Street opened higher despite lingering concerns about Chinese intervention in tech. The S&P 500 (^GSPC) was up 0.2% shortly after the open, the Dow Jones Index (^DJI) was 0.1% higher, and the Nasdaq (^IXIC) had added 0.3%.

Chinese ride-hailing app Didi (DIDI) dropped another 5% after crashing 20% in its New York IPO on Tuesday. Chinese regulators opened a data probe of the company and called for its removal from the country's app store, blindsiding Didi just as it went public.

Concerns about Beijing's clampdown on tech hit sentiment in Asia overnight. The Hong Kong Hang Seng (^HSI) dropped 1%, South Korea's KOSPI (^KS11) slipped 0.6%, and Japan's Nikkei (^N225) fell 1%, not helped by a lower-than-expected reading for the country's leading economic index.

On the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai Composite (000001.SS) rallied 0.7% and the Shenzen Component (399001.SZ) gained 1.8%.

Watch: What are SPACs?

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