Britain's FTSE accelerates falls following U.S. data miss
The FTSE 100 weakened in afternoon trade after U.S. consumer sentiment tumbled to its lowest in over a year.
British blue-chips earn nearly a quarter of their revenues in the United States, and traders had been looking to the data to provide a catalyst to push higher after initial jobless claims from the States on Thursday had helped the FTSE 100 hit a new five-year peak.
However, the expiry of options and futures contracts made trade more volatile and distracted from the day's news flow.
"The U.S. consumer confidence data was really dire, and if the stock market had truly reflected that, we'd have seen a much bigger sell-off," said Jeremy Batstone-Carr, analyst at Charles Stanley.
"But with options expiry dominating, it matters less on a day like today. I'm a bit wary of reading too much into market action on days like this."
Banks came into the spotlight, losing 1.3 percent, with traders citing the Federal Reserve's comments to Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan that they must improve their capital plans as weighing on the sector in the UK.
The UK's two biggest companies, Royal Dutch Shell and HSBC, were heavy fallers.
HSBC led the banking sector lower, falling 2.3 percent and taking more than 12 points off the index.
HSBC has seen substantial downgrades to estimates from analysts
Be the first to comment.