Global markets report, 28 March

• FTSE 100 down 0.3% to 6,588

• Gold down 1.01% to $1,291.30/oz

• £/$ – 1.6611

The FTSE 100 slipped further yesterday. The index closed down 0.3% at 6,588.

Babcock International was the day’s biggest faller, down 6.7% after it asked investors to stump up nearly £1bn to buy helicopter operator Avincis. Other big fallers included precious metals miners Fresnillo and Randgold, which lost 4% and 2.7% respectively as the price of gold fell.

In Europe yesterday, the Paris CAC 40 fell six points to 4,379 and the German Xetra Dax rose three points to 9,451.

In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell four points to 16,264, the S&P 500 lost 0.2% to 1,849, and the Nasdaq Composite was 0.5% lower at 4,151.

Overnight in Japan, the Nikkei 225 rose 0.5% to 14,696, and the broader Topix added 0.8% to 1,186. And in China, the Shanghai Composite and the CSI 300 each lost 0.2% to 2,041 and 2,151 respectively.

Brent spot was trading at $107.80 early today, and in New York, crude oil was at $101.53. Spot gold was trading at $1,295 an ounce, silver was at $19.76 and platinum was at $1,400.

In the forex markets this morning, sterling was trading against the US dollar at 1.6622 and against the euro at 1.2119. The dollar was trading at 0.7290 against the euro and 102.15 against the Japanese yen.

And in the UK, newspaper group Johnston Press reported an operating profit of £54.3m for 2013, up 2.5% from the year before. Revenue fell by 5.5% to 291.9m, and operating costs fell by 12.4%. “This business is no longer on the glide path to oblivion,” said chief executive Ashley Highfield.

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