The FTSE 100 slipped back again yesterday as energy, mining and financial stocks retreated after China signalled a tightening in its monetary policy. The index closed down 0.7% at 5,498.
Miners were firmly at the bottom of the table. Vedanta fell 6.4%, Fresnillo and Lonmin lost 5.2% and 4.1% respectively, and Xstrata was 3.3% lower.
Oil stocks suffered too, with Royal Dutch Shell down 1.6% and BP losing 0.3%, but BG Group gained 1%.
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Banks were also among the fallers. HSBC shed 0.2%, Lloyds fell 0.3% and Barclays and RBS lost 0.1% and 0.6% respectively.
Biggest climber of the day was property group Land Securities, which gained 1.5%.
In Europe, the Paris CAC 40 fell 43 points to 4,000; and the German Xetra Dax was down 97 points at 5,943.
In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.3% to 10,627; the S&P 500 fell 0.9% to 1,136; and the Nasdaq Composite was 1.3% lower at 2,282.
In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 1.3% to 10,735; and the broader Topix index lost 1.1% to close at 944. In China, the Shanghai Composite index fell 3.1% to 3,172; and the CSI 300 closed down 3.2% at 3,241.
Brent spot was trading at $78.30 early today, and in New York, crude oil was at $80.03. Spot gold was trading at $1,134 an ounce, silver was at $18.35 and platinum was at $1,559.
In the forex markets this morning, sterling was trading against the US dollar at 1.6237 and against the euro at 1.1191. The dollar was trading at 0.6894 against the euro and 91.41 against the Japanese yen.
And today, Italian confectioner Ferrero is reported to have dropped its talks with US chocolate maker Hershey about a takeover of Cadbury. The decision was made by Ferrero's chairman, Michele Ferrero, who wanted to maintain his family company's independence without involving external investors. The move leaves Kraft the sole bidder; Cadbury executives have called the American company's offer "derisory".
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