Markets: FTSE 100 struggles to get going

The FTSE 100 carried on sliding into Thursday, falling six points to 6,186.

FTSE 100 down 0.1% to 6,186 Gold down 0.2% to $1,210.95/oz £/$ 1.4423

The FTSE 100 carried on sliding into Thursday, falling six points to 6,186.

National Grid led the sell-off with a loss of 4.6%, followed by high-street chain Marks & Spencer, down 3.9%. House builder Taylor Wimpey fell 2.7%.

Emissions control systems specialist Johnson Matthey led the fight back with a 6.0% gain. Bank Standard Chartered was the second highest riser, up 2.4% and engineering firm GKN rose 2.2%.

In Europe yesterday, the Paris CAC 40 fell nine points to 4,466, and the German Xetra Dax rose four points to 10,208.

In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.3% to 17,839, as did the S&P 500 to 2,105, and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.4% to 4,971.

Overnight in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 gained 0.5% to 16,642, and the broader Topix index slipped 0.4% to 1,337. And in China, the Shanghai Composite rose 0.5% to 2,939, and the CSI 300 added 0.7% to 3,189.

Brent spot was trading at $50.13 early today, and in New York, crude oil was at $49.22. Spot gold was trading at $1,212 an ounce, silver was at $16.07 and platinum was at $962.

In the forex markets this morning, sterling was trading against the US dollar at 1.4428 and against the euro at 1.2938. The dollar was trading at 0.8968 against the euro and 108.78 against the Japanese yen.

And in the UK, BP will pay $175m to settle claims from American investors that it lied to cover up the extent of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Investors, who accused the oil giant of misleading the market, had sought as much as $2.5bn.

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