August 14, 2018 / 9:23 AM / a year ago

FTSE dips, miners weigh as Turkey crisis eases

LONDON (Reuters) - UK shares ended the day down 0.4 percent on Tuesday after a choppy session, weighed down notably by lower copper prices as fallout from the Turkish lira crisis that has rattled global markets since Friday eased.

A worker shelters from the rain under a Union Flag umbrella as he passes the London Stock Exchange in London, Britain, October 1, 2008. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

The FTSE 100 .FTSE closed down 0.4 percent while the pan-European STOXX 600 was flat.

Data showing wage growth in Britain had slowed even though unemployment fell to its lowest since 1975 had little impact on stocks.

“Despite the resilience of the data, the inability of wages to show any signs of pushing up from their current levels continues to act as a significant imponderable”, wrote Michael Hewson from CMC Markets.

“This is likely to make the calculus around another rise in interest rates much more difficult.”

Shares in Antofagasta (ANTO.L) fell 7 percent, the worst performer, after reporting first half core earnings down 16.2 percent versus a year earlier.

The Chilean copper producer cited weaker ore quality and higher costs and said trade tensions clouded the broader market outlook. Goldman Sachs analysts called the numbers disappointing.

Also weighing, London copper fell after data showed the Chinese economy was cooling, suggesting demand from the world’s top consumer of the metal could slow.

Other miners also traded in the red, including Fresnillo (FRES.L) down 1.5 percent while Rio Tinto (RIO.L) and Glencore (GLEN.L) retreated 1.3 percent and 0.8 percent respectively.

Anglo-Australian mining giant BHP BLT.L rose 0.5 percent, however, after the union at its Escondida copper mine in Chile called off a strike planned to start on Tuesday.

The Royal Mail (RMG.L) fell 1.6 percent after being fined 50 million pounds for discriminating against Whistl, its only major competitor delivering letters.

Esure ESUR.L continued to rise towards the buyout price of 280 pence per share set in Bain Capital’s 1.21 billion pound offer. The UK insurer was up 3.9 percent at 227.8 pence.

“The fact that the offer was all-cash also pleased shareholders,” commented Artjom Hatsaturjants from Accendo Markets.

Julien Ponthus, Editing by William Maclean and John Stonestreet

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