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Thursday 24th of June 2010
March 18, 2009    

Legal & General adds 5 percent as most other insurers decline

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by Elaine Frei
Legal & General adds 5 percent as most other insurers decline

Most European equities markets were lower Wednesday as miners declined on falling metals prices.

In London the FTSE 100 fell 1.35 percent to 3,8043.99 while the FTSE 250 dropped 0.32 percenet to 6,191.7.

Most insurers were lower, but Legal & General (LSE: LGEN) added 5.05 percent on the 100 even as Friends Provident (LSE: FP) dropped 6.65 percent and Prudential (LSE: PRU; NYSE: PUK) was down 4.82 percent.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 dropped 0 .8 percent to 710.08while the CAC-40 was down 0.25 percent to 3,760.34 while the Dax and the IBEX each added 0.21 percent to 3,996.32 percent and 7,661.6 percent respectively.

Most markets in the Asia-Pacific region were higher, but in Australia the S&P/ASX200 was down 0.16 percent to 3,446.3 and the Sydney Ordinaries dropped 0.21 percent to 3,386.2.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 added 0.29 percent to 7,972.17 and the Topix index was up 0.53 percent to 764.67 but the Mothers market of small and mid-caps was down 1.91 percent to 287.35.

Taiwan’s Taiex was up 0.12 percent to 5,047.54 while the Shanghai Composite added 0.24 percent to 2,223.72, the Kospi was 0.52 percent higher to 1,169.95, the Straits Timex Index gained 1.08 percent to 1,575.94, the Sensex was up 1.27 percent to 8,976.68 and the Hang Seng added 1.86 percent to 13,117.17.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was 0.7 percent lower to 7,344.25 in afternoon trade ahead of a decision from the Federal Reserve on interest rates, while the S&P 500 was down 0.07 percent to 777.59 but the Nasdaq Composite had added 0.51 percent to 1,469.55.

Crude oil prices were lower in New York after the Federal Reserve ended its two-day meeting with a decision to keep interest rates steady and to buy $300 billion in Treasury bonds, and after the EIA reported that gasoline inventories were up last week in the US rather than falling as had been expected.

Metals prices and most grains prices fell on the session.

The pound was lower on more bad news while the Swiss franc saw gains on safe-haven demand.

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