- FTSE closes down 42.54 at 6,823.51
- Oil, housing stocks fall
- Investors await Fed Reserve meeting
techMARK 2,843.77 -0.42%
FTSE 100 6,823.51 -0.62%
FTSE 250 15,892.30 -0.98%
As had been widely anticipated, the UK market headed lower in today's session, tracking a fairly steady downwards path to its closing level of 6,823.51, a drop of 42.54 points on the day.
Losses seen Stateside served to further drag the index lower, with the US market in negative territory after Friday's absent session in celebration of the Fourth of July holiday, which followed further record gains earlier in the week.
That came on the back of unimpressive German industrial production data out this morning, which showed a month-on-month contraction of 1.8% in May, according to the Federal Statistics Office, well below the consensus estimate for a fall of 0.3%.
Adding to woes were concerns about global economic growth after International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde warned that an "investment deficit" is providing a drag on the recovery. Ahead of the IMF's update of its economic outlook expected later this month, Lagarde said that forecasts will be "very slightly different" than its last estimates in April when it predicted that the global economy will expand by 3.6% this year.
Investors are now gearing up for the latest minutes due out from the Federal Reserve on Wednesday, amid widespread speculation rates could rise sooner than had previously been anticipated. Critically, perhaps, on Sunday Goldman Sachs brought forward the expected date for the Federal Reserve's first interest rate hike.
"Equity markets remain at risk from sudden drops, as markets try to tread water ahead of earnings season," said IG Market Analyst Alastair McCaig.
"The time until earnings season gets into its stride seems awfully large this afternoon, as quickfire selling saw indices give back many of the gains from the latter part of last week. The DAX's 200 point move over the past week has been sliced unceremoniously in half, while the FTSE's retreat from 6,880 sounds a clear warning sign that investors still feel unhappy about moving above this level.
"Only Federal Reserve minutes can really provide another boost to upward momentum, but that is still 48 hours away, leaving the market broadly vulnerable to some more adventurous shorting."
AstraZeneca leads risers
Drugs giant AstraZeneca rose strongly in today's session on reports investor Neil Woodfrd has selected the group "as the single biggest investment for his new fund", according to the Telegraph, which said 8.2% of the £1.6bn fund had been put towards the FTSE 100 group.
Engineering group Weir was a high riser after analysts at Citigroup upgraded the stock to 'buy', hiking their target price for the shares
from 2,600p to 3,100p. The bank said that Weir's opportunities in oil and gas are "underappreciated" by the market.
Tullow Oil led the oil and gas sector south. Faroe Petroleum announced that the Butch South West exploration well has no hydrocarbons. Tullow has a 15% stake in the project.
The housing sector was notably lower, with Barratt Developments registering the biggest decline. According to Jasper Lawler at CMC Markets said the reason for the housing sell-off "was that the outlook for the second half was not quite as rosy as some were expecting from Taylor Wimpey given rising house prices".
FTSE 100 - Risers
Friends Life Group Limited (FLG) 319.80p +0.76%
AstraZeneca (AZN) 4,451.00p +0.76%
Weir Group (WEIR) 2,735.00p +0.74%
G4S (GFS) 263.90p +0.69%
Petrofac Ltd. (PFC) 1,231.00p +0.49%
Shire Plc (SHP) 4,651.00p +0.35%
Pearson (PSON) 1,149.00p +0.17%
SSE (SSE) 1,591.00p +0.13%
Royal Mail (RMG) 477.20p +0.10%
Glencore (GLEN) 342.50p +0.09%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Tullow Oil (TLW) 817.50p -3.14%
Kingfisher (KGF) 351.00p -2.96%
easyJet (EZJ) 1,325.00p -2.65%
Barratt Developments (BDEV) 372.00p -2.54%
Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW) 179.30p -2.50%
Land Securities Group (LAND) 1,019.00p -2.02%
TUI Travel (TT.) 389.30p -2.01%
Burberry Group (BRBY) 1,429.00p -1.99%
Persimmon (PSN) 1,281.00p -1.84%
Hammerson (HMSO) 573.00p -1.80%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Big Yellow Group (BYG) 515.00p +2.28%
Balfour Beatty (BBY) 225.50p +2.13%
Serco Group (SRP) 369.30p +2.02%
Ferrexpo (FXPO) 143.00p +1.78%
Poundland Group (PLND) 343.00p +1.48%
PZ Cussons (PZC) 359.70p +1.04%
Betfair Group (BET) 1,030.00p +0.98%
Petra Diamonds Ltd.(DI) (PDL) 195.00p +0.93%
ITE Group (ITE) 244.80p +0.87%
Evraz (EVR) 97.80p +0.82%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
AO World (AO.) 246.00p -7.52%
Pets at Home Group (PETS) 184.00p -5.88%
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 377.20p -4.51%
Bellway (BWY) 1,531.00p -3.65%
Senior (SNR) 274.80p -3.55%
Fisher (James) & Sons (FSJ) 1,352.00p -3.43%
Supergroup (SGP) 1,080.00p -3.40%
Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group (JLT) 1,026.00p -3.30%
Dunelm Group (DNLM) 823.00p -3.01%
Home Retail Group (HOME) 180.20p -2.96%