LONDON MARKETS: FTSE 100 Weighed By Losses For Miners, Oil Producers
GKN reportedly considering splitting up in two
U.K. stocks sagged Monday, with mining shares losing ground as a new trading week got under way, but gains for industrials companies helped cushion the loss.
The FTSE 100 index fell 0.1% to 7,514.98, led by commodity and financial shares. The index on Friday closed up less than 1 point (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/ftse-100-gains-as-us-budget-vote-pushes-pound-lower-2017-10-20). That marked a 0.2% loss last week, breaking a four-week run of gains.
Mining shares moved lower alongside a pullback in metals prices, including gold , copper and palladium . Shares of copper producer Antofagasta PLC (ANTO.LN) fell 0.8%, Anglo American PLC (AAL.LN) gave up 0.4% and BHP Billiton PLC (BLT.LN) (BHP.AU) (BHP.AU) dropped 0.8%.
Dollar-denominated metals prices were lower as the U.S. dollar rose against most major rivals, largely against the euro and the Japanese yen . Euro traders were looking ahead to the European Central Bank's policy decision due Thursday, while yen traders sold the Japanese currency after this weekend's general election that delivered a convincing majority to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's party (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/japans-abe-wins-by-a-landslide-now-aims-to-change-constitution-2017-10-23). Abe's win raises the prospect for continued loose monetary policy.
Oil prices resisted strength in the dollar, but shares of oil major BP PLC (BP.LN) (BP.LN) dropped 0.6% and Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) (RDSB.LN) was down 0.3%.
The pound traded at $1.3193, up from $1.3188 late Friday in New York.
Corporates: GKN PLC (GKN.LN) gained 3% following a Sunday Times report the company is considering a split of its aerospace and automotive businesses (https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/gkn-which-makes-wing-tips-for-airbus-and-parts-for-mercedes-eyes-split-to-create-two-ftse-champions-x7c2t6bj0).
Spire Healthcare Group PLC shares (SPI.LN) rallied 11% on the mid-cap FTSE 250 after Spire rejected a preliminary takeover approach from major shareholder Mediclinic International PLC (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spire-rejects-mediclinics-16-bln-takeoveroffer-2017-10-23)(MDC.LN). The offered valued Spire at about GBP1.20 billion ($1.59 billion). Mediclinic shares fell 0.8% on the FTSE 100.
Also off the FTSE 100, Pendragon PLC shares (PDG.LN) plunged 17% after the auto dealer issued a profit warning, citing a decline in demand for new cars and a price correction for used cars. Pendragon also said Chairman Mel Egglenton has stepped down with immediate effect for personal reasons.
"It's the latest sign of retail-woe in the U.K., especially among companies dealing with big ticket items, as the household spending squeeze continues," said Spreadex financial analyst Connor Campbell in a note.
CRH PLC shares picked up 1.5% after the building materials supplier won support of its planned takeover of Ash Grove Cement Co. (ASHG)
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
October 23, 2017 04:21 ET (08:21 GMT)