World markets continued to tank yesterday as the United States became the latest country to release downbeat economic data.
A US manufacturing report showing the sector barely grew in January sent the FTSE 100 into a late tailspin, closing 44.78 points lower at 6,465.66.
Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC, said: “The recent emerging market fallout is helping push Vodafone’s share price lower as speculation grows that the recent troubles could hit its business in this region, with India and Turkey most likely to be affected.
“This sort of uncertainty is the last thing the company needs now it has lost a key revenue earner in Verizon Wireless.”
Shares in the telecoms firm were down almost 2 per cent at 222.1p. Aberdeen Asset Management was also out of favour because of the company’s involvement with emerging markets, with its shares 3.6 per cent lower at 376.7p.
The announcement by Lloyds Banking Group that it would be taking a further £1.8 billion of charges in respect of PPI mis-selling weighed on the listed banks as investors were once again wondering if the cash drain due to historical failings will ever end. Lloyds shares fell 4 per cent or 3.3p to just under 80p, while Barclays was down 2.5p at 265.7p and Royal Bank of Scotland dropped 6.7p to 333.3p in the wake of its own additional provision for PPI last week.
On the plus side Randgold Resources was on the up after reporting record levels of gold production in 2013, and providing a positive outlook for 2014. It was the biggest blue chip riser, up 262p or 6.3 per cent at 4,455p.
But drinks giant Diageo couldn’t make gains despite news that chief executive Ivan Menezes had bought £615,000 of shares, taking advantage of a steep decline in the price after quarterly results last week. The stock slipped 8p at 1,792.5p.