Miners send London markets lower

| June 6, 2006 | 0 Comments

In London on Tuesday, equities markets saw substantial declines as a result of sell-offs that have been blamed directly on comments by the chairman of the US Federal Reserve on Monday. Ben Bernanke’s comments were widely interpreted as indicating that there is a high likelihood that US interest rates will go higher soon.

The FTSE 100 dropped 1.6 percent on the day to 5,669.8, while the FTSE 250 declined by 3 percent to 9,075.2. Volume was at 3.1 billion shares traded on the day.

Only six stocks on the 100 managed to end the day in positive territory. These included BAA, which added 2.1 percent to 948p, with 260 million shares traded, after Spanish construction group Ferrovial bought up 13.9 percent of the company’s shares.

Both indexes were hurt by declines in mining stocks as investors worried that commodity demand will slow if the Fed raises US interest rates further. On the 100, Xstrata dropped 5.8 percent to £19.39, BHP Billiton was down 4.5 percent to 992½p, and Antofagasta lost 4.4 percent to £19.59. Among the mid-cap miners, Vedanta declined by 8.9 percent to £12.85, while Lonmin fell 5.9 percent to £24.13. Despite these declines, both Vedanta and Lonmin are expected to be placed on the 100 soon.


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