1630: Close The FTSE ended today's session significantly lower, down 63 points as both miners and building materials group CRH, while the gains were led by Next, buoyed by comments from the BRC and broker Oriel Securities. Macro wise, activity in Britain´s construction sector experienced a rise in November to hit the 62.6 point mark from 59.4 the previous month. The BRC said that while although the Christmas trading period got off to a slow start in November, clothing retailers performed well. This afternoon saw Amlin announce the CEO of its UK arm is planning to retire next year. The FTSE 100 closed down 62.90 points at 6,532.43.
1609: In the strategy note issued today in which it downgraded UK equities to benchmark from overweight Credit Suisse ironically offered up a rather sanguine view on the economy, saying it expects it to benefit from continued policy stimulus. Of particular interest, they expect fiscal policy to be easier than expected on the back of stronger growth. As well, a rise in the minimum wage is deemed possible. FTSE 100 down 53 to 6,542.
1608: Capital Economics today comments that: "Since the pound's current level could subdue inflation significantly and impede the economy's rebalancing, the Committee might take action to weaken the pound soon."
1536: Travis Perkins is moving lower after providing the market with its medium-term targets at today´s Capital markets day. FTSE 100 down 43 to 6,552.
1505: Next continues to be the best performer on the Footsie after the latest BRC survey data showed that clothes retailers did best in November, much as in the US over the Thanksgiving weekend. As well, total online sales accounted for the bulk of the 0.6 per cent rise in November UK retail sales, those figures revealed.
1403: Smith and Nephew remains near the top of the leaderboard after analysts at Morgan Stanley upped their view on the shares
to overweight from equalweight. FTSE 100 down 55 to 6,541.
1216: The MPC´s Ben Broadbent has reportedly said that the Bank will not raise interest rates until the recovery is 'entrenched'. UBS has trimmed its target prices for mining sector companies after downgrading its gold and silver price
forecasts for 2014 and 2015. Fresnillo and Hochschild Mining took the biggest haircuts. FTSE 100 down 54 to 6,541.
1113: Analysts at JP Morgan believe improved perceptions of the UK´s solvency are driving gains in Sterling, with CDS markets now implicitly pricing in a return to AAA status for Britain, according to The Daily Telegraph.
1020: Cable is moving up by 0.33 per cent to the 1.6408 mark in the aftermath of today´s construction PMI numbers. Technical analysts at Sharecast believe charts show it may even be headed as high as the 1.7050 mark over coming months. That is in line with the view held by other analysts, such as at Markets.com and Saxo Bank. FTSE 100 down 48 to 6,548.
1000: The record of last week´s meeting of the Bank of England´s Financial Policy Committee shows that the FPC will not consider imposing more robust curbs on balance sheets until global regulators have agreed on a common definition.
0930: Activity in Britain´s construction sector defied market expectations for a slight slowdown in November. The Markit/CIPS construction sector purchasing managers´ index for the month of November hit the 62.6 point mark in that month. The consensus estimate was for it to slip to the 59 point mark, from 59.4 in October. Both the output and employment gauges rose at their sharpest rates since August 2007, Markit said.
0913: Overnight the latest "official" Chinese services sector purchasing managers´ data revealed a dip in activity in November. Surely that is weighing on capital markets a little on Tuesday morning. Balancing that out a bit, investors took comments made by Bank of Japan (BOJ) governor Haruhiko Kuroda to the effect that, "we are ready to adjust monetary policy without hesitation if risks materialize," to mean that further stimulus measures are in the pipeline.
0853: UK stocks are moving slightly lower at the start of the day, tracking overnight losses on Wall Street. That follows better-than-expected manufacturing data worldwide yesterday and, as is often the case, greater angst about the potential for an early start to Fed tapering. Miners are doing worst today on the top flight index. Acting as a backdrop, Rio Tinto Chief Sam Walsh this morning announced that his outfit will lower capital expenditures significantly by 2015 because, in his own words: "From where I stand, we continue to see market fragility and volatility." Credit Suisse and Bank of America have raised their targets for the S&P 500
in 2014. However, the Swiss broker today also lowered its view on British stocks from "overweight" to "benchmark." Shares in BP have barely reacted to news of a legal victory Stateside. William Hill is moving higher after being added to UBS´s list of most preferred stocks. FTSE 100 down 10 to 6,585.