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FTSE falls as doubt re-emerges over trade war progress

Wednesday, 5th December 2018
Optimism over a potential breakthrough in the trade war proved short-lived after President Donald Trump took to twitter with confusion rife about what was agreed over the weekend.

Miners were once again in the firing line with Glencore shedding 3.9% to 285.5p and Fresnillo falling 3.2% to 774.6p.

The FTSE 100 traded 1.4% lower at 6,921.

European indices were also in negative territory with Germany's DAX down 1.2% at 11,202.

US stock markets were closed to mourn the passing of former President George Herbert Walker Bush.


Pharmaceuticals firm Shire gained 3% to £46.86 after shareholders at its Japanese suitor Takeda approved a £46bn takeover of the group. Shire shareholders are set to vote on the deal imminently.

Train and bus company Stagecoach Group gained 15% to 177p despite swinging to a first-half loss owing to a write down at its US business.

Underlying profit fell by less than expected and the company upgraded its full-year guidance, while announcing the US business was up for sale.

Oil services company Wood Group reversed 4.1% to 626.2p, despite announcing that it had won a $43m contract to construct 80 miles of steel pipeline in west Texas.

Logistics property investor Tritax Big Box REIT secured £400m of debt to fund potential acquisitions. Its shares advanced 0.7% to 134p.


Shares in Mereo BioPharma rose 5.2% to 199.9p after proposing a combination with US-listed OncoMed Pharmaceuticals.

Broking and advisory group Numis Corporation was flat at 277p as it posted a 17% fall in full-year profit after higher investment spending, including on staff, offset rising revenue.

Fashion retailer Joules jumped 11.2% to 230.2p after it said in a trading update that it boosted revenue by 18% in the first half of its financial year.

Eastern Europe-focused alcoholic drinks company Stock Spirits gained 7.3% to 209.5p after it posted a 14% rise in annual profit, as it boosted sales in its key markets of Poland and the Czech Republic.

Embattled cafe chain Patisserie, whose shares are still suspended, delivered a rare piece of good news, announcing that it had poached the former finance director of veterinary company CVS Group as its interim chief financial officer.

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