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FTSE joins global rebound on stimulus measures

The FTSE 100 regained some ground on Tuesday, as massive stimulus measures from central banks and governments paused the coronavirus-driven selloff.

UK shares rose 4.3%, tracking strong gains in Asia, as investors cheered the U.S. Federal Reserve’s offer of unlimited expansion of asset purchases to stabilise financial markets.

UK’s commodity-heavy FTSE 100 was boosted by a jump in oil and metal prices. Oil majors BP Plc, Royal Dutch Shell Plc rallied more than 15%, while the wider mining index rose 10%, led by BHP Group, Rio Tinto and Anglo American Plc.

Battered travel stocks including those of Carnival Corp and InterContinental Hotels Group jumped more than 8%.

UK midcap shares also rose by 4.3%. However, the main FTSE index was set for its worst month in over three decades as more companies issued profit warnings and Prime Minister Boris Johnson ordered Britons to stay at home. The number of deaths in Britain has risen to 335 from the coronavirus.

Home furnishings retailer Dunelm Group dropped 3% after saying it would draw down all its available credit and cancel interim dividend payment due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Britain’s biggest sportswear retailer JD Sports rose 5.5% as it delayed the publication of financial results to May, but said it has enough cash to ride out the coronavirus crisis.

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Latest data is showing Britain’s economy is shrinking at a record pace, faster than during the 2008-09 financial crisis, as businesses across the services sector shut due to the coronavirus.