UK equities dropped the most in a week after the US and the European Union slapped fresh measures against Russia and a Malaysian passenger plane was downed in the Donetsk area of eastern Ukraine.
BP Plc declined 1.9% after the US Treasury Department restricted OAO Rosneft, in which Europe’s third-largest oil firm has interest, from drawing capital from American markets. Mothercare Plc dropped 8.8% after it revealed sales slid in its local market. ITV Plc ascended the most in a year and half after the commercial broadcaster sold a minority stake to Liberty Global Plc, a cable TV firm.
The FTSE 100 Index tumbled 46.35 points or 0.7%, to 6,738.32 as markets closed in London, retreating from its rise so far this month. The FTSE All-Share Index lost 0.6% today, while ISEQ of Ireland plunged 0.5%.
“With the recent introduction of broad sectoral sanctions by both the U.S. and the EU, the interests of the Russian elite are now directly threatened. BP, through its stake in Rosneft, is clearly in the firing line now,” market strategist Michael Ingram of London-based BGC Brokers LP told Bloomberg.
The US and EU introduced additional tough sanctions on Russian firms because of Moscow’s persistent backing of separatists in eastern Ukraine. The sanctions hit Rosneft, natural gas company OAO Novatek, OAO Gazprombank and eight firms dealing in defense products. The international Monetary Fund showed that the EU had a trade shortfall of above $120 billion with Russia last year.
Sports Direct International Plc lost 2.2% to 697.5 pence after the full-year pre-tax profit it announced fell short of analysts’ estimates.
Barclays Plc plunged 2.7% to 210 pence, as it faces a probe by a US Senate Committee.
According to Yahoo News, ITV shares changed hands the most, with 92.7 million units trading. Lloyds Banking Group came second, seeing 82.48 million shares change hands.
Imperial Tobacco Group added 1.86% to 2,679.
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