Royal Bank of Scotland Group down on first-half losses

| August 5, 2011 | 0 Comments
Royal Bank of Scotland Group down on first-half losses

European equities markets were down again Friday even though the US Labor Department reported that the economy there added 117,000 new jobs in July, cutting the US unemployment rate to 9.1 percent.

The FTSE 100 was down 2.71 percent to 5,246.99 in London, while the FTSE 250 dropped 2.44 percent to 10,313.1.

All banks were lower, with Royal Bank of Scotland Group (LSE: RBS) down 6.94 after it said it lost £1.4 billion in the first half, and all homebuilders and the real estate sector also saw declines, with all but one constituent in the real estate sector dropping by more than 4 percent, while miners, the chemicals sector, the energy sector, and utilities each seeing just one gainer in their sectors.

Commodities trader Glencore International (LSE: GLEN) was the best performer on the 100, gaining 4.45 percent, while Elementis (LSE: ELM) led the chemicals sector and the 250 higher as it added 4.05 percent.

The biggest decliner on the 100 came from the telecommunications sector, where BT Group(LSE: BT) was down 7.21 percent, while over on the 250 food manufacturer Premier Foods led declines as it dropped 18.39 percent.

Computer services provider Logica (LSE: LOG) was down 13.95 percent as its pre-tax profit of £75 million was below profits in the first half last year.

Oil explorer BP (LSE: BP) dropped 2.34 percent after it started talks with Transocean Ltd (NYSE: RIG) regarding last year’s oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico a day after the drilling contractor’s chief executive said that BP should bear all liability for costs and fines related to the spill.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was down 1.67 percent to 976.1, the IBEX fell 0.18 percent to 8,671.2, the CAC-40 was 1.26 percent lower to 3,278.56, while the Dax dropped 2.78 percent to 6,236.16 and saw no gainers on the session.

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region were lower again on concerns that the global economy is in trouble.

The Nikkei 225 was down 3.72 percent to 9,299.88 in Tokyo, while the Topix index was 3.07 percent lower to 800.96 and the Mothers market dropped 3.22 percent to 435.23, with exporters down as Toyota Motor (TYO: 7203) fell 3.2 percent and consumer electronics manufacturer, which gets half of its sales in Europe and the United States, dropped 5 percent.

Oil producer Inpex (TYO: 1605) was down 6.8 percent on a decline in crude oil prices, while Nomura Holdings (TYO: 8604) was 5.4 percent lower to its lowest since February 1975.

The Shanghai Composite was down 2.15 percent to 2,62.42, India’s Sensex fell 2.19 percent to 17,305.9, the Straits Times Index was 3.61 percent lower to 2,944.78 in Singapore, South Korea’s Kospi dropped 3.7 percent to 1,943.75, in Australia the S&P/ASX200 was down 4 percent to 4,105.4 and the Sydney Ordinaries fell 4.21 percent to 4,169.7, the Hang Seng was 4.29 percent lower to 20,946.1 in Hong Kong, and the Taiex dropped 5.58 percent to 7,853.13.

New York markets were mixed at 1 p.m. in volatile trade as the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 1.16 percent to 11,515.5 and the S&P 500 was up 0.65 percent to 1,207.88 but the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.03 percent to 2,555.75.

Crude oil prices were up in New York and London, with WTI up 43 cents in midday trade in New York, while Brent crude was last reported $1.73 higher to $108.98 on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London.

Gold was $1 higher at midday in New York, but silver was 96 cents lower per troy ounce while copper had dropped 13 cents to $4.11 per pound.

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