Britain's FTSE rises slightly thanks to mining stocks

* FTSE 100 erases losses, up 0.1 pct

* FTSE 250 about flat

* Oil majors dip, miners rise

* Interserve up 3.3 pct after rescue plan news (Adds company news item, quote, updates share moves)

By Muvija M and Shashwat Awasthi

Dec 21 (Reuters) - UK blue-chip stocks rose slightly onFriday, recouping the session's losses as mining stocks gaveinvestors something to cheer about at the end of a largelydismal week that was underpinned by global economic growthconcerns.

The FTSE 100 .FTSE gained 0.1 percent, while the FTSE 250 .FTMC was roughly unchanged as the market wrapped up its finalfull week of trading in 2018.

Wall Street lifted the mood, rising in volatile trade onFriday after heavy losses on the chances of a partial U.S. government shutdown and of further interest rate increases bythe Federal Reserve. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL3N1YQ4FE

That guided a 0.6 percent gain in HSBCHSBA.L , which has alarger international presence, making it the top boost to theFTSE 100.

The blue chip index outperformed its European peers due toits exposure to the mining sector .FTNMX1770 . Anglo AmericanAAL.L climbed 2.8 percent, while Rio Tinto RIO.L , BHP BHPB.L and AntofagastaANTO.L rose 1.4-1.6 percent on highercopper prices.

UK indices were still on track for their worst quarter since2011, when Europe was battling a sovereign debt crisis, andtheir worst year since 2008 amid growing worries about slowerglobal growth, Brexit and rising U.S. borrowing costs.

VodafoneVOD.L dropped 2 percent and was among the biggestdrags on the main index after a tender offer to replace PwC asits auditor.

However, investors developed an appetite for Just EatJE.L as it rose 3 percent after rival Takeaway.comTKWY.AS struck a930-million-euro ($1.07 billion) deal to buy larger rivalDelivery Hero's DHER.DE activities in Germany. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N1YP7VT

The British takeaway group was urged to sell assets by ashareholder earlier this week, and analysts have since said thatthe calls raised the possibility of a takeover or go-privatedeal.

Royal MailRMG.L shares gained 1.5 percent before the firmleaves the blue-chip index as part of the reweightings on Dec.24.

Nike's better-than-expected results provided temporaryrespite to the battered retail sector, with JD Sports jumpingover 7 percent to be among the top mid-cap gainers.

"Nike results are a little ray of sunshine in the market,"said Paul Mumford, a fund manager at Cavendish Asset Management.

Still, surveys showed that British consumers are at theirgloomiest in more than five years with business sentiment at itsweakest since the 2016 vote to leave the European Union. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N1XA4ER

"I think the main sentiment is going to come after the NewYear when we start having retailers' trading statements comingthrough," said Mumford.

Elsewhere on the midcaps, RPC Group PlcRPC.L , Europe'slargest plastics packaging firm, erased earlier gains and closedthe day with a 0.7 percent dip after it extended the deadlineagain for Apollo Global ManagementAPO.N to make a firm offerto buy the company or walk away.

The deadline has been extended four times and Bain Capitalearlier pulled out of the race without giving a reason.

"If I was an RPC shareholder, I would be anticipating themagic of Christmas more positively but as always with magic,there can/might be an element of illusion," said Peel Huntanalysts.

In small-caps, Interserve rose 3.3 percent after the supportservices group announced a rescue plan involving adebt-for-equity swap in an attempt to avoid a Carillion-stylecollapse. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL3N1YQ2T8

The shares, which had rallied as much as 12 percent at theopen, have still lost 88 percent year to date, reflecting theproblems of the sector. ($1 = 0.8718 euros) (Reporting by Muvija M and Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru;editing by Josephine Mason and David Stamp) ((Muvija.M@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780,outside U.S. +91 80 6749 3638; Reuters Messaging:muvija.m.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

(( For related prices, Reuters users may click on - * UK stock report .L FTSE index: 0#.FTS6 techMARK 100 index: .FTT1X FTSE futures: 0#FFI: Gilt futures: 0#FLG: Smallcap index: .FTSC FTSE 250 index: .FTMC FTSE 350 index: .FTLC Market digest: .AD.L Top 10 by vol: .AV.L Top price gainers: .NG.L Top % gainers: .PG.L Top price losers: .NL.L Top % losers: .PL.L

* For related news, click on - * UK hot stocks: [HOT and GB] Wall Street: .N Gilts report: GB/ Euro bond report GVD/EUR Pan European stock report: .EUTokyo stocks: .T HK stocks: .HK Sterling report: GBP/ Dollar report: USD/

* For company prices, click on - * Company directory: UKEQ By sector: FTAX

* For pan-European market data, click on - * European Equities speed guide................ EUR/EQUITY FTSE Eurotop 300 index........................... .FTEU3 DJ STOXX index................................... .STOXX Top 10 STOXX sectors........................ .PGL.STOXXS Top 10 EUROSTOXX sectors................... .PGL.STOXXES Top 10 Eurotop 300 sectors.................. .PGL.FTEU3S Top 25 European pct gainers.................... .PG.PEUR Top 25 European pct losers..................... .PL.PEUR ))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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