FTSE 100 drops 1% as commodity, financial stocks weigh – Reuters

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A man shelters under an umbrella as he walks past the London Stock Exchange in London, Britain, August 24, 2015. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett/File Photo

  • easyJet slides on discounted rights issue, rejected bid offer
  • Hays tops FTSE 250 after Barclays upgrade to “overweight”
  • FTSE 100 down 1.1%, FTSE 250 off 0.5%

Sept 9 (Reuters) – London’s FTSE 100 index fell on Thursday as concerns over slowing economic growth dragged heavyweight commodity and financial stocks, while easyJet’s share sale plan sent the British airline to the bottom of the mid-cap index.

The blue-chip index (.FTSE) fell 1.1% and was on course for its worst daily performance in three weeks. Life insurers (.FTNMX303010) and banks (.FTNMX301010) dragged the most, dropping 2% and 1.3%, respectively.

Miners (.FTNMX551020) slumped 1.4%, tracking iron-ore prices, whileBP (BP.L) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) shed 1.4% each.

The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index (.FTMC) declined 0.5%.

Globally, investors treaded lightly as a resurgence in COVID-19 cases fuelled concerns about slowing global growth amid talk of major economies easing crisis-era stimulus measures.

The European Central Bank’s policy decision, due later in the day, was on the radar for cues on whether the bank would take a step towards reducing its emergency economic support for the bloc.

“The potential taper talk doesn’t necessarily please investors, as the COVID situation remains uncertain and European businesses need the ECB’s support to go through what might be another dark winter,” said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior analyst at Swissquote Bank.

“I believe that the divergent opinions at the heart of the ECB won’t let the bank make any sharp move in the close future.”

Domestically, Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey said policymakers were split evenly last month on whether basic conditions for a rate hike were met by the British economy’s recovery. read more

easyJet (EZJ.L) fell 9.7% after the British airline said it rejected a takeover offer and would raise $1.7 billion from shareholders to fund its pandemic recovery and expand operations. read more

Genus (GNS.L) slid 9.5% as Peel Hunt downgraded the livestock genetics firm’s stock to “hold” from “buy” after it missed annual profit estimates.

On the other hand, Hays (HAYS.L) jumped 3% to top the FTSE 250 index after Barclays upgraded the recruitment agency’s stock to “overweight” from “equalweight”.

Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Devika Syamnath

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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