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LONDON: UK shares inched higher on Monday, supported by consumer staples and industrials stocks as the economic recovery gathered pace, while recruiter SThree rose after its performance returned to pre-pandemic levels in the first quarter.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 index climbed 0.4%, with consumer staples including Diageo Plc, Unilever Plc and Ocado Group being the biggest gainers on the index.

The FTSE 100 has rebounded more than 37% from a coronavirus-driven crash last year, but the pace of gains has slowed recently as investors fear a vaccine-led economic recovery could lead to higher inflation.

The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index rose 0.4%, led by gains in industrials stocks.

Food delivery company Deliveroo plans to sell around 1 billion pounds ($1.39 billion) of new shares in its upcoming initial public offering, expected to be the biggest London listing in more than seven years.

SThree rose 0.6%, after saying its first-quarter performance had returned to pre-pandemic levels and exceeded its expectations.

Flutter Entertainment, the world’s largest online betting group, jumped 6.9% to the top of blue-chip index, after saying it was considering listing a small shareholding of its US FanDuel business.

“The markets have not gotten over the inflation issue but they are not as worried about it as they were two weeks ago,” said Connor Campbell, an analyst at Spreadex.

“Whether that resilience will continue will be dependent on what the Fed says on Wednesday and then what the Bank of England says on Thursday.”

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