Thursday, 19th October: The FTSE reversed almost all the gains that were made throughout the week as it opened 0.24% lower at 7525 and continued to drop throughout the morning by as much as 0.77%. By mid day it reached 7507, down 0.46%.
At the very bottom this time was Unilever, although the groups’ share price wasn’t hurt as badly as some of the other laggards of the FTSE 100 earlier in the week. A mixed Q3 trading update led the group to start the day around 3.0% lower. The index as a whole was covered in red this morning though, as the market accurately anticipated a slowdown in UK retail data. Retail sales fell by 0.8% in September, reversing the 0.9% growth in August. This translates into a weak growth of 1.2% in retail sales on the year in Q3, demonstrating the slowest rate of annual growth in the past four years. Considering the combination of ever-increasing inflation and insubstantial wage growth, weak retail sales was the only logical result.
By mid-day, only five out of the 37 FTSE 350 sectors were in green, with the personal goods sector as expected at the bottom. The three sectors at the top and their constituents were:
- Fixed Line Telecommunications – BT Group, Telecom Plus, and TalkTalk Telecom
- Electricity – SSE and Drax Group
- Mobile Telecommunications – Inmarsat and Vodafone Group
Bye the end of the day, the FTSE 100, FTSE 250 and FTSE 350 were down 0.26%, 0.63% and 0.33% respectively.
After a full week of growth, oil started to slip today but managed to hold on to most of the gains made earlier in the week from supply cuts, a dip in US production and worries across the Middle East. Oil started the week at $57.22 and closed at $58.23 yesterday, but today at around 12:00(BST) it had been brought down by 1.43% to $57.40.