Rio puts a brave face on poor numbers

Rio Tinto tried to look on the bright side yesterday when it said that China's economy will soon zoom ahead again.

The FTSE 100 mining giant's first-half underlying earnings fell to $5.2 bn (£3.3 bn) from $7.7 bn a year before, off sales down 13 per cent to $25.3 bn.

Rio was hit as China was forced to curb its appetite for copper. But its numbers were better than expected and shares rose 89.5p to 3,220.0p.