FTSE 100 reels as BHP announces plan to drop dual London listing

BHP has revealed plans to drastically change its dual listing structure in London, in a move that will automatically trigger the mining giant’s removal from the FTSE 100 index under UK stock market rules.

The company will shift its main listing to Sydney, with chairman Ken MacKenzie stating the move will allow BHP to ‘pursue opportunities in new and existing markets and create value and returns over generations’.

“Now is the right time to unify BHP’s corporate structure,” he said. The decision comes after the group confirmed plans to offload its US$13 billion oil and gas business in a merger with Australian energy company Woodside Petroleum.

The deal, which has not yet been agreed, will help BHP focus on mining iron ore, copper and nickel – key materials that will power the global green industrial revolution.

BHP will continue to have a standard listing on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) despite its imminent disengagement from the FTSE 100. BHP first joined the London market in 2001 after a merger with the South African miner Billiton, which floated on the LSE in 1997.

The firm’s London share price rose by more than 3% on Tuesday after the company reported a near-doubling in profit for the year following the recent boom in demand for commodities. BHP’s current share prices gives it a value of almost £130 billion, second only to the pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca on the FTSE 100.