UK markets close in 5 hours 28 minutes
  • FTSE 100

    7,032.86
    -30.54 (-0.43%)
     
  • FTSE 250

    23,276.97
    -331.66 (-1.40%)
     
  • AIM

    1,259.16
    -9.07 (-0.72%)
     
  • GBP/EUR

    1.1678
    -0.0032 (-0.27%)
     
  • GBP/USD

    1.3640
    -0.0065 (-0.47%)
     
  • BTC-GBP

    30,698.47
    -1,403.47 (-4.37%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    1,038.82
    -62.69 (-5.69%)
     
  • S&P 500

    4,443.11
    -12.37 (-0.28%)
     
  • DOW

    34,869.37
    +71.37 (+0.21%)
     
  • CRUDE OIL

    76.28
    +0.83 (+1.10%)
     
  • GOLD FUTURES

    1,738.60
    -13.40 (-0.76%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    30,183.96
    -56.10 (-0.19%)
     
  • HANG SENG

    24,500.39
    +291.61 (+1.20%)
     
  • DAX

    15,432.76
    -141.12 (-0.91%)
     
  • CAC 40

    6,552.90
    -98.01 (-1.47%)
     

FTSE 100 records worst session in 3 weeks on stronger pound

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2-min read
FILE PHOTO: A man shelters under an umbrella as he walks past the London Stock Exchange
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

By Devik Jain and Amal S

(Reuters) -Britain's export-heavy FTSE 100 ended lower on Thursday weighed by a strengthening pound and concerns over slowing economic growth, while easyJet's share sale plan sent the British airline to the bottom of the mid-cap index.

The blue-chip index ended down 1.0%, recording its worst session in three weeks with consumer staple and pharmaceutical stocks weighing the most.

The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index fell 0.2%.

The FTSE 100, which jumped around 26% from October lows, is on course to end the week in the red as the rising spread of the Delta variant of coronavirus and supply chain issues raised worries of a slowdown in economic recovery.

"One thing investors hate is tax and taxing a market full of dividend darlings is a body blow for sentiment," said Keith Temperton, sales trader at Forte Securities.

"I think that's the overriding reason for stocks being lower today and that will be a driver for the performance going forward as well."

Earlier this week, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson set out plans to raise taxes on shareholder dividends to try to fix a health and social care funding crisis.

Dollar-earning consumer staples stocks, including Unilever, British American Tobacco and Imperial Brands, shed between 1.4% and 1.6% on a stronger pound.

"And a big negative there is also a pretty strong pound," Temperton said.

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank signalled it will only slightly reduce its emergency bond purchases over the coming quarter.

easyJet fell 10.2% 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.

Genus slid 7.6% as Peel Hunt downgraded the livestock genetics firm's stock to "hold" from "buy" after it missed annual profit estimates.

(Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty, Devika Syamnath and Elaine Hardcastle)

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting