June 11, 2020 / 7:29 AM / 25 days ago

London stocks battered for fourth day on virus fears, Fed outlook

FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen outside the entrance of the London Stock Exchange in London, Britain. Aug 23, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

(Reuters) - UK stocks slipped for the fourth straight day on Thursday, with the FTSE 100 index marking its longest losing streak in three months, hurt by fears of a new wave of COVID-19 infections in the United States and a bleak economic outlook by the Federal Reserve.

Total cases of the novel coronavirus in the United States surpassed 2 million on Wednesday, while an expert said the country may see 200,000 deaths at some point in September.

Furthering worries was the Fed’s projection of a 6.5% contraction in the U.S. economy in 2020, while signalling plans of years of extraordinary support for an economy facing a long road back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The pessimistic outlook from the Fed was not unexpected, but right now investors are looking at potential declines further because markets are spooked by the possibility of a second wave of coronavirus infections,” said Joshua Mahoney, markets analyst at IG Group.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 index .FTSE closed 4% lower. The British mid-cap index .FTMC fell 3.6%, logging its worst day in nearly two months.

British stocks are now set for their first weekly fall in four, with hopes of a quicker economic revival fizzling out as preexisting worries of the COVID-19 pandemic hammer risk appetite.

“In the UK, we have gone from a position from market optimism to a position where clearly, we are not going to see that kind of drive anymore,” Mahoney said.

Travel and leisure stocks took another beating on Thursday, with Carnival’s (CCL.L) 12% slide leading declines on the FTSE 100 index. EasyJet (EZJ.L) and Cineworld (CINE.L) also ended lower.

Unilever (UNA.AS) (ULVR.L) proposed to ditch its dual Anglo-Dutch legal structure and create a single company in Britain to give it more flexibility for mergers and acquisitions. UK-listed shares (ULVR.L) of the company fell 1%.

Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V and Angus MacSwan

0 : 0
  • narrow-browser-and-phone
  • medium-browser-and-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser
  • wide-browser-and-larger
  • medium-browser-and-landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser-and-larger
  • above-phone
  • portrait-tablet-and-above
  • above-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet-and-above
  • landscape-tablet-and-medium-wide-browser
  • portrait-tablet-and-below
  • landscape-tablet-and-below