FTSE 100 Live March 07: Brent crude oil price at highest since 2008, London market share decline continues


Stocks slide on stagflation fears

The FTSE 100 index fell 2.2%, or 150 points, to 6,836 as fears of stagflation mount due to soaring oil and wheat prices.

Deteriorating economic conditions and the prospect of less interest rate hikes sent shares of lenders Lloyds Banking Group and NatWest down 7%, while airline stocks also slipped on the rise. fuel costs and reduced demand.

British Airways owner International Airlines Group and low-cost carrier easyJet both fell more than 10%, to 110p and 418.7p.

Other big losers included fashion house Burberry, which fell 6% to 1548p as it temporarily closed three of its stores in Russia.

Stronger commodities stocks offered some protection for the FTSE 100, while the FTSE 250 index fell more than 4%, or 859 points to 18,528. Oxford Instruments plunged 24% when it emerged that precision instrument company Spectris had withdrawn a potential £1.7 billion takeover bid.


Average home price up 10.8% in one year

The average house price rose another 0.5% in February, the eighth consecutive month of growth and 10.8% more than a year earlier.

The latest record £278,123 reported by the Halifax lender comes after the fastest pace of annual growth since June 2007.

Halifax chief executive Russell Galley said: “Two years into the pandemic, average property values ​​have now risen by £38,709 or 16% since February 2020.

“Lack of supply continues to support rising property prices, with recent industry surveys showing a shortage of new properties listed, now a long-term trend. This may be a particular problem at the far end. the largest in the real estate market.

Galley expects market activity to return to more normal levels and house price growth to slow as soaring oil and gas prices increase pressure on household finances.


Six directors leave Polymetal’s board of directors

Six directors of the Russian company Polymetal International have left the board of directors of the London-listed gold company.

Among them are chairman and mining veteran Ian Cockerill and senior independent director Ollie Oliveira. The mass departures left Polymetal with a board consisting of chief executive Vitaly Nesis and two non-executive directors.

Steel producer Evraz, 29% owned by Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, has also announced that Sandra Stash has stepped down with immediate effect. On Friday it emerged that James Rutherford had resigned.

Both stocks continue to trade on the London market but have lost more than 70% of their value since the invasion of Ukraine.


Brent surges to $130 a barrel

Brent crude futures jumped 10% to nearly $130 a barrel, their highest level in 14 years after the United States raised the prospect of a Russian oil export ban.

Delays in talks that could lead to the return of supplies from Iran to the international oil market also contributed to the latest price spike.

Wheat prices, which hit a record high due to Ukraine and Russia accounting for 30% of all exports, continued to rise today.

The prospect of a significant economic slowdown caused by this spike in energy and food prices spells another dismal session for equity markets today.

Asian markets fell sharply this morning and the FTSE 100 index is set to open another 130 points lower after falling 6.7% last week in its worst performance since March 2020.

Deutsche Bank commentator Jim Reid said: “There hasn’t been much new news over the weekend that takes the narrative of the conflict forward and it seems more likely that it will be a battle of wear and tear in the absence of a major development.

“For economies and markets, particularly in Europe, it then depends on whether gas (and to a lesser extent oil) continues to flow from Russia to the continent.”


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