Disappointing US manufacturing figures stopped an early rally in its tracks on Monday, leaving the FTSE 100 index to eke out meagre gains.
Angus Campbell, head of market analysis at Capital Spreads, said: “After a positive start to trading and calls that the Christmas rally was just getting started, the FTSE pulled back from resistance around the 5,900 level following some worse-than-expected manufacturing figures from the US.
“This flew in the face of better than expected manufacturing data from China and the UK.”
The Footsie closed up 4.4 points at 5,871.2, with banks dragging on the index following under-whelming figures from the Bank of England’s Funding for Lending scheme. The data showed net lending at Lloyds and Royal Bank of Scotland had fallen, pushing their shares lower. Lloyds dropped 1.6 per cent at 45.7p and RBS nearly 1 per cent at 292.6p.
Mining stocks enjoyed a better session as hopes of improved Chinese demand ensured copper producer Kazakhmys lifted 2p to 715.5p and Rio Tinto added 26.5p to 3,120p.
Other risers in the top flight included ITV as the broadcaster continued to benefit from recent signs of resilience in the advertising market and an improved performance for its production division. Shares, below 70p in the summer, topped the 100p mark yesterday after a rise of 1.5p to 100.4p.
Among the smaller stocks, shares in Edinburgh-based Angel Biotechnology jumped 13 per cent after it confirmed details of its joint venture with a Russian firm. It said all existing contracts carried out for partner MMH will be transferred to the JV company, in which Angel will have a minority stake. The shares added 0.01p to 0.08p.
NEW YORK: Wall street struggled to extend the previous week’s gains, dropping on Monday night as disappointing US factory numbers curbed optimism over China’s economic growth.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 59.98 points, or 0.46 per cent, to end at 12,965.60 while the broader Standard & Poor’s 500 Index slipped 6.72 points, or 0.47 per cent, to finish at 1,409.46. The Nasdaq Composite Index declined 8.04 points, or 0.27 per cent, closing at 3,002.20.