- FTSE 100 falls from three-and-a-half week high
- UK manufacturing confidence weakens
- German industrial output falls
- IMF hints at cut to growth forecasts
techMARK 2,859.13 +0.12%
FTSE 100 6,862.56 -0.05%
FTSE 250 16,049.02 -0.01%
UK stocks edged lower on Monday morning on the back of weak economic data as investors took profits after a decent rally the previous week.
Though Friday was a fairly lacklustre day across European indices with trading volumes affected by a public holiday in the States, London's FTSE 100 still managed to finish out the week with a gain of around 1.6%.
The UK benchmark index was 0.1% lower at 6,863 in early trading today, after rising to 6,866.05 last week, its highest close since June 10th.
Data released this morning showed that UK manufacturing confidence fell in June for the first time in 14 months amid fears about rising costs and a skills shortage. The BDO Optimism Sub-Index for manufacturing, which predicts growth expectations in six months' time, fell to 119.5 in June from 121 in May, albeit above the 100 level indicating long-term growth.
Meanwhile, German industrial production contracted by 1.8% month-on-month in May, according to the Federal Statistics Office. This was worse than the downwardly-revised 0.3% decline in April and well below the consensus estimate for a fall of 0.3%.
Concerns about global economic growth were also on investors' minds this morning 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.
Mining stocks fall
Antofagasta led the fall in the mining sector early on as the stock pulled back after an 8% jump last week. Declining metal prices were weighing on basic resources shares
this morning with gold in particular retreating from a three-month high.
BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Glencore and Fresnillo were also trading in the red.
In contrast, Anglo American edged higher after saying it will offload its 50% stake in UK aggregates joint venture with French group Lafarge for £885m, just a year and a half after it was formed.
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.
Defensive sectors were among the best performers this morning as investors sought out relatively 'safer' assets as they scaled back their appetite for risk. Stocks in the telecoms, utilities and real estate categories were all on the rise.
Drinks giant SABMiller edged lower after announcing the disposal of its near-40% interest in South African hotel and entertainment group Tsogo Sun Holdings, valued at ZAR11.7bn ($1.09bn).
UK-focused residential developer Taylor Wimpey declined despite saying it saw a reduction in "market risk" in the first half as the housing market continued to strengthen. Sales rates and pricing were at the upper end of forecasts during the first six months of the year, showing the benefit of the traditionally strong spring selling season, it said.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Weir Group (WEIR) 2,775.00p +2.21%
BT Group (BT.A) 391.40p +0.88%
British Land Co (BLND) 699.00p +0.79%
Sports Direct International (SPD) 758.50p +0.73%
Severn Trent (SVT) 1,986.00p +0.66%
GKN (GKN) 371.20p +0.65%
RSA Insurance Group (RSA) 482.30p +0.60%
National Grid (NG.) 854.50p +0.47%
Reckitt Benckiser Group (RB.) 5,145.00p +0.39%
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) 332.70p +0.36%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Antofagasta (ANTO) 814.00p -1.57%
Tullow Oil (TLW) 833.00p -1.30%
BHP Billiton (BLT) 1,996.00p -0.75%
Coca-Cola HBC AG (CDI) (CCH) 1,316.00p -0.75%
Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW) 182.60p -0.71%
Glencore (GLEN) 340.25p -0.57%
Aberdeen Asset Management (ADN) 458.80p -0.52%
Experian (EXPN) 1,016.00p -0.49%
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) 2,454.00p -0.49%
Ashtead Group (AHT) 932.00p -0.48%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Perform Group (PER) 236.50p +2.74%
Aveva Group (AVV) 2,188.00p +2.67%
Balfour Beatty (BBY) 224.90p +1.86%
Domino Printing Sciences (DNO) 605.50p +1.51%
Dechra Pharmaceuticals (DPH) 754.50p +1.48%
Essentra (ESNT) 800.00p +1.46%
Pets at Home Group (PETS) 198.30p +1.43%
Big Yellow Group (BYG) 509.50p +1.19%
Alent (ALNT) 374.20p +1.14%
Xaar (XAR) 535.00p +1.13%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Polymetal International (POLY) 575.00p -1.88%
Just Eat (JE.) 260.00p -1.59%
esure Group (ESUR) 275.00p -1.43%
Euromoney Institutional Investor (ERM) 1,097.00p -1.26%
Drax Group (DRX) 682.00p -1.23%
Afren (AFR) 148.30p -1.20%
African Barrick Gold (ABG) 223.50p -1.19%
Ophir Energy (OPHR) 219.60p -1.17%
Ferrexpo (FXPO) 138.90p -1.14%
Centamin (DI) (CEY) 67.25p -1.10%