MONDAY MARKET CLOSE: Banks trend lower

Banking stocks edged lower as the City nervously awaited the latest figures from the industry this week.

The storm in southern England meant many traders stayed at home, and the FTSE 100 Index added just 4.48 points amid low trading volumes, to close at 6,725.82.

Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC, said: “It’s been a quiet session on European markets with a lot of UK traders absent from their desks after the worst storm in five years succeeded in shutting down most of southern England’s rail system, keeping a lot of people at home.

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“The main movers have been in the banking sector with both Barclays and Lloyds Banking Group lower ahead of their trading updates later this week.”

Barclays was down 4.65p at 263.25p and Lloyds slipped 0.75p to 79.62p.

Temporary power provider Aggreko achieved the biggest rise in the top flight after it said its power projects arm has quoted for a record level of business over the past six months. The Glasgow-based group surged 6 per cent or 91p to 1,608p.

Outsourcing firm G4S ended the day down 0.5 per cent after it rejected an offer worth £1.55 billion for its cash transportation business. G4S called the approach from private equity firm Charterhouse “highly opportunistic” and its shares closed down 1.3p at 257.2p.

Outside the top flight, shares in car dealership Pendragon jumped 3.3 per cent after it said full-year results would be “materially ahead” of expectations.

The owner of Evans Halshaw and Stratstone said sales were up by a fifth in the third quarter of the year, amid strong signs of recovery on UK forecourts.

The shares gained 1.25p to 39.75p, as broker Numis upgraded its forecasts for the firm.