Mining provides FTSE 100 boost

<p>Mining shares have helped to pull the FTSE 100 higher.</p>

The FTSE 100 was given a shot in the arm on Wednesday (November 26th) morning thanks to the mining sector.

Miners such as Antofagasta and BHP Billiton recorded increases, rising three per cent and 1.3 per cent respectively. This sprung investors into action as the sector remained cheap despite a drop in commodity prices. This allowed the benchmark FTSE 100 index to grow by 23.20 points to reach 6,754.34.

BHP Billiton recently announced that it would be increasing its cost-cutting plans, moving its target from £2.2 billion to £2.5 billion. The move came in response to the falling price of iron ore, coal and oil resulting in BHP introducing better self-help measures designed to offset the potential issues which comes with a drop in price.

Following the announcement BHP saw its share price fall by 41p to 1621p after adding that it would be reducing its capital spending by four per cent to £9.04 billion for the current financial year. It was also revising its capital spending for 2016 to £8.2 billion.

Andrew Mackenzie, BHP Billiton chief executive, said: "Put simply, we can organise a company that operates 12 large, core assets differently to one with 30 operated assets of varying sizes across a broader range of commodities. We can bring senior management closer to the operations, reduce duplication and cut functional costs."

The improved performance of the mining sector was reflected in the FTSE 100. However, it was the FTSE 250 which saw the biggest move. Thomas Cook saw shares plummet by 18 per cent after chief executive Harriet Green quit the organisation. Ms Green's departure ends a two year tenure but came as a shock to the markets.

Peter Fankhauser will be stepping into Ms Green's role, after the outgoing chief executive said that her work was "complete" at Thomas Cook.

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