BHP Slips as Quarter-Century Presence on FTSE 100 Draws to Close

(Bloomberg) — BHP Group Plc shares slipped on their last trading day as an FTSE 100 member as the miner’s near quarter-century association with the benchmark draws to a close.

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London Stock Exchange Group Plc’s FTSE Russell unit confirmed this week that the company would be replaced in the index by Airtel Africa Plc, effective Jan. 31, following BHP’s decision to unify its structure in a single listing in Sydney.

The firm has had a presence on the U.K. blue-chip gauge since 1997, when Britain’s Billiton Plc was added to the index, according to FTSE Russell records. Billiton merged with Australia’s BHP Ltd. in 2001, creating a mining giant.

With a market capitalization of about 124 billion pounds ($166 billion), BHP’s exit sees the FTSE 100 lose its third-largest stock, with only energy firm Shell Plc and drugmaker AstraZeneca Plc worth more.

BHP says its share unification will make the company more agile, while the firm is considering a return to large-scale M&A, Bloomberg has reported.

BHP shares were down 1.3% to 2,411 pence at 9:30 a.m. U.K. time. When Billiton joined the index on Sept. 22 1997, the shares closed at 216 pence, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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By Matt Earle

Matthew Earle is the Founder of MiningFeeds. In 2005, Matt founded to provide data and information to the mining investment community. This site was merged with Highgrade Review to form MiningFeeds. Matt has a B.Sc. degree with a minor in geology from the University of Toronto.

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