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Wednesday 15th of October 2008
May 31, 2006

FTSE 100 loses 5 percent in May


by Elaine Frei

After another sharp fall on Tuesday, the London equities markets saw significant gains on Wednesday as the FTSE 100 added 1.3 percent to 5,723.8, getting back almost half of yesterday’s decline. The FTSE 250 was up 0.7 percent to 8,298.2. Despite the day’s gains, however, the 100 dropped 5 percent in May, while the 250 lost 5.9 percent on the month. It was the largest monthly loss for both indexes since January 2003.

In the mining sector, Xstrata added 5.4 percent to £21.30 in heavy trading, as £272 million worth of its stock was traded during the final auction period of the day. The miner will be joining the MSCI index beginning on Thursday.

MyTravel also traded at a higher volume than usual as rumors circulated that it could be targeted for takeover by a European company. The tour operator’s shares were up 3.5 percent to 238p. MyTravel’s half-year earnings report is due June 15, and talk that it may have incurred tax losses in the UK helped fuel the rumors.

In the insurance sector, life assurer Friends Provident added 2.4 percent to 177½p on an upgrade from “underperform” to “outperform” from Credit Suisse.

William Morrison gained 0.26 percent to 195¾p on rumors that an Icelandic investment group had been buying up shares in the supermarket operator.

PartyGaming added 3.2 percent to 130p on the day. Like Xstrata, it will also be joining the MSCI index on Thursday.

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Story link: FTSE 100 loses 5 percent in May


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