July 15, 2019 / 8:33 AM / 3 months ago

UPDATE 2-Chinese data, Antofagasta help FTSE 100 end longest losing streak in years

* FTSE 100 up 0.3%, FTSE 250 up 0.2%

* Antofagasta among biggest blue-chip gainers

* Sports Direct falls after delaying results (Adds company news items, updates share prices)

By Muvija M

July 15 (Reuters) - London’s FTSE 100 clawed back some ground on Monday, ending its longest losing streak in three-and-a-half years as Chinese data eased investor concerns over a global growth slowdown.

After seven sessions of losses, the FTSE 100 rose 0.3%, with miner Antofagasta surging after a favourable arbitration verdict. Midcaps gained 0.2%.

The data from China showed industrial output and retail sales comfortably topping forecasts, but economic growth slowed to its weakest pace in at least 27 years.

“Bad news = good news. Relatively lacklustre growth in China has the market baying for more stimulus,” Markets.com analyst Neil Wilson wrote. He said there were “signs of encouragement” in the output and retail sales data.

The biggest support to the blue-chip index came from miners , which have substantial exposure to China - the world’s No.2 economy and top metals consumer.

Antofagasta jumped 4% after a World Bank tribunal ordered Pakistan to pay damages of $5.8 billion to Tethyan Copper, a joint venture between the company and Barrick Gold , in a dispute over a copper mine.

Micro Focus skidded nearly 6% after a filing showed executive chairman Kevin Loosemore had sold about 11.6 million pounds worth of its shares.

Homebuilder Persimmon was down 3% after the Times said a television investigation was set to reveal concerns about the quality of the company’s properties and customer service.

On the midcap index, retailer Sports Direct slumped 10% on its worst day this year after it delayed preliminary results, citing problems integrating its House of Fraser business and increased scrutiny of its accounts that could affect guidance.

Infrastructure group Balfour Beatty fell 3% after news that a unit of the company had appointed Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP to investigate allegations that it falsified maintenance records at a U.S. Air Force base.

Reporting by Muvija M and Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and John Stonestreet

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