UK stocks : FTSE 100 falls 0.5 pct
The blue-chip FTSE 100 closed down 0.5 percent, or 28.93 points lower, at 5,925.37 points, marking its worst intraday fall since losing 0.6 percent on November 26.
Traders said uncertainty over talks in the United States to avoid a "fiscal cliff" - a combination of government spending cuts and tax rises due for early next year which could hit the U.S. economy - was the main reason for the fall.
However, most investors still felt U.S. politicians would reach an agreement to avoid the "fiscal cliff". They said that even if a deal was not reached by the end of December, an agreement was likely to be struck in early January.
"It's still worth staying invested in equities and not worth worrying too much," said SVM Asset Management managing director Colin McLean.
"I don't think there'll be much of a sell-off, provided they can come up with something within the next 10 days," he added.
DECENT GAINS FOR 2012
Uncertainty over the U.S. budget situation has prevented the FTSE 100 from rising beyond the 6,000 point mark - a level seen by technical traders as key to propelling further moves higher.
"I think there's going to be some resolution on the cliff but they're running out of time," said a European equity options broker who declined to be named.
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