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    London Stocks Rise on Optimism Over Swift Economic Recovery

    Abstract:(Reuters) – British shares tracked gains in Asian peers on Thursday, lifted by hopes of a swifter economic rebound this year, while Quilter rose after agreeing to sell its international business to Utmost Group.

      The blue-chip FTSE 100 index rose 0.3%, with industrials and consumer discretionary stocks, mainly BAE Systems Plc, Relx Plc, Next Plc and Compass group Plc, being the biggest gainers.

      Mining stocks, including Rio Tinto, Anglo American and BHP, were also among the biggest boosts on the index.

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      Global equities crept higher on hopes of a stronger U.S. economy, as investors parsed details of a $2 trillion U.S. government spending plan and hoped for strong jobs data later in the week. [MKTS/GLOB]

      The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index climbed 0.3%, led by industrials and real estate stocks.

      Quilter rose 2.0%, after it agreed to sell its international business to specialist life assurance company Utmost Group for 483 million pounds ($664.37 million), as it sharpens its focus on its UK wealth management unit.

      Fashion retailer Next rose 4.2%, even after it reported a halving in annual pretax profit after COVID-19 lockdowns closed its stores but raised its forecast for a big rebound this year.

      (Reporting by Shivani Kumaresan in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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