UK’s FTSE Takes a Pounding on Rising Ukraine Tension

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UK’s FTSE Takes a Pounding on Rising Ukraine Tension

Britain’s blue-chip stocks slid for the second day, on a US equities sell-off late last week and escalating violence in Ukraine’s eastern region.

The FTSE 100 Index fell led by Ashtead Group Plc (AHT) and Barratt Development, whose stock sunk more than 4.5% each, as investors sold off stock in UK’s best performing firms from the past two years.

Cigarette manufacturers climbed the most in the broader FTSE350 Index led by British American Tobacco Plc and Imperial Tobacco Group, with the firms gaining at least 2% each.

According to Bloomberg, the blue-chip FTSE100 was down at 6,357.51 as of 12:07 pm in London, after retreating 24.19 points or 0.4% to add to a 2% flop it incurred last week.

The broader FTSE All Share Index lost 0.6% today. ISEQ Index of Ireland slid 1.4%. The Standard and Poor’s 500 Index dropped 1% on April 11 and affected European stocks. The index suffered its worst weekly plunge since 2012 on worries that its stocks were overpriced.

“I see a big profit taking and a huge sector rotation. There were, and still are, many companies that are highly valued on high hopes. So a correction is healthy,” said Pierre Mouton of Geneva-based Notz, Stucki & Cie.

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The Ukrainian government reported that a member of the Ukrainian army was killed and five wounded in protests staged by Pro-Russian separatists in the city of Slovyansk.

As Reuters reports, towns in Ukraine’s eastern region faced military action from government security forces targeting pro-Russian separatists who fail to surrender arms and end their siege of state buildings.

Investors said they were watching the developments in Ukraine from the sidelines.

Travel firms slumped, with International Consolidated Airlines Group SA sinking 4.8% to 373.2 pence. The second-most dominant tour operator in Europe Thomas Cook Group Plc was down to 162.7 pence after shrinking 5.4%.

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To contact the reporter of this story; Jonathan Millet at john@forexminute.com