The UK’s economy enjoyed a strong start to the year and there has been an increase in business investment, but weak exports have hampered the country’s growth.
The FTSE 100 closed down by 1.5 percent, as mining stocks - including BHP Billiton and Anglo American fell by three to four percent on falling iron ore prices. Retailers also struggled, as new data published by Kantar World Market showed that the UK grocery market had fallen by 0.1 percent in the twelve weeks leading up to the 21st June. Shares in Tesco fell by 2.8 percent on the news that its sales were estimated to have fallen by 2.8 percent. Jasper Lawler, an analyst for CMC Markets, noted that sentiment in the UK had been dented severely.
One of the poorest performers of the day was Standard Life, who suffered from a broker upgrade down from “sector perform” to “underperform”. Meanwhile, the broader markets were under heavy pressure as the possibility of a Greek default became increasingly likely. The country has called a referendum regarding the austerity measures proposed by Europe, but the referendum is set to take place after the default deadline, and the country’s creditors, as well as European negotiators, appear to be losing patience.