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Thursday 20th of November 2008
May 15, 2006

Mines take FTSE lower


by Elaine Frei

London equities markets were down substantially again on Monday, with the FTSE 100 losing 1.2 percent to 5,841.3 and the FTSE 250 falling 2.6 percent to 9,557.3. It was the fifth session of losses in a row for the 100.

The mining sector accounted for a substantial amount of the declines. Xstrata and Kazakhmys each lost 8.4 percent, to £22.08 and £12.04 respectively. Xstrata is said to be looking for a way to fund an offer of £9.4 billion for Canadian miner Falconbridge. Elsewhere in the sector, Antofagasta dropped 6.9 percent to £22.73, while BHP Billiton was down 5.6 percent to £11.02.

The steel sector also saw losses as Anglo-Dutch group Corus was down 3.7 percent to 421¼p after US investor Brandes said that it has reduced its holding in the company from 4.8 percent to 3.79 percent.

Retailer Next was also down, by 0.3 percent to £17.45 even though Man Securities raised its target share price for the company from £19 to £22.50 before Next’s trading update, due on Wednesday.

Among banks, Lloyds TSB added 0.8 percent to 510p on a possible dividend yield of 6.7 percent.

The telecommunications sector had a good day. Vodafone, which had UBS hike its target share price to 153p and issue a “buy” recommendation, was up 1.2 percent to 125¼p. Meanwhile, BT Group gained 2.6 percent to 216p on rumors that it will have a smaller-than-projected pension fund deficit when it issues its full-year report on Thursday.

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