LONDON MARKETS: FTSE 100 Closes Lower As Miners Slip On China Worries

By Carla Mozee, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

Ocado rallies on upbeat analyst note

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U.K. stocks ended lower on Monday for a third straight session as mining shares fell under the weight of concerns about the health of Chinese companies.

How markets are moving: The FTSE 100 index dropped 0.4% to close at 7,383.90 after a choppy trading session.

The pound changed hands at $1.3332, unchanged from late Friday in New York. Sterling picked up 0.9% against the U.S. dollar last week, according to FactSet data.

What's moving markets: Most mining shares started the week in the red in London. The sector logged losses on Asian markets as bond yields climbed and as Beijing kept up its crackdown on so-called shadow banking.

Higher yields on debt would increase borrowing costs for companies. Chinese stocks stumbled Monday, with the Shenzhen Index losing 1.6%.

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Mining stocks are sensitive to developments in China, as companies there a big buyers of industrial and precious metals such as iron ore, copper and gold.

What strategists are saying: European stocks were lower "as fears grow that Chinese equities could be starting one of their downward legs, which may cause fright for global investors," said Rebecca O'Keeffe, head of investment at Interactive Investor.

"Chinese equity markets are notorious for delivering a volatile ride for investors, who have become used to boom and bust periods. The China effect is especially significant for commodity markets and by extension the metal-and-oil heavy FTSE 100," said O'Keeffe in a note.

Stock movers: Among miners, Fresnillo PLC (FRES.LN) dropped 2.1%, Antofagasta PLC (ANTO.LN) shares fell 3.4% and Glencore PLC (GLEN.LN) lost 1.2%.

Aviva PLC (AV.LN) pushed up 0.6% after a Sunday Times report (https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/aviva-boss-mark-wilson-to-reveal-insurer-is-spending-1bn-on-its-own-shares-j8r9kz233)that the insurance company is preparing to say it will spending more than GBP1 billion to buy back its shares and signal repayment of expensive bonds.

GlaxoSmithKline PLC (GSK.LN) (GSK.LN) gained 1.8% following a ratings upgrade of the drugmaker to buy from neutral at UBS. "We upgrade GSK to buy as we believe concerns of continuing earnings decline and the dividend sustainability are now overdone," said UBS analyst Michael Leuchten in a note.

Outside the FTSE 100 index, shares of Ocado Group PLC (OCDO.LN) rallied 7.3% after analysts at Credit Suisse said the stock is too cheap, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 27, 2017 12:29 ET (17:29 GMT)