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FTSE 100: This morning’s risers and fallers

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Strong gains in the UK mining sector weren't enough to keep London's FTSE 100 from slipping into the red on Tuesday morning.

Indices across Europe were tracking a weak finish on Wall Street and a mixed performance on Asian markets overnight.

The FTSE 100 was trading 0.6 per cent lower at 6,526 within the opening hour, despite a decent jump from mining group Rio Tinto on the back of M&A speculation.

Dealer Jonathan Sudaria from Capital Spreads said that the negative start “belies the huge amount of uncertainty in the markets at the moment”.

He explained: “With central banks around the world deliberating about monetary policy, economic data getting more cloudy and stock markets flirting with correction territory, traders are none the wiser if current levels are a great buying opportunity or a bear trap.”

Germany industrial production drops

Economic news wasn’t helping sentiment in early deals after it was revealed that German industrial production dropped by 4 per cent in August, pulling back after a revised 1.6 per cent increase in July. The consensus estimate was for a lesser decline of 1.5 per cent.

The figures followed further weak figures from Germany on Monday which showed that factory orders in August slumped 5.7 per cent after 4.9 per cent growth in July. This was the biggest slump since 2009.

In other economic data on Tuesday, investors will be looking out for UK industrial production, the latest UK economic growth estimates by the NIESR and US consumer credit figures.

Rio Tinto jumps after Glencore approach revealed

Rio Tinto rose 5 per cent after confirming that Glencore had approached the company in July about a “possible combination”, though the board had reject the approach as it “was not in the best interests of […] shareholders”. The deal would have created the biggest mining company in the world with a market value estimated to be $160bn.

Rio Tinto was responding to press speculation after Bloomberg earlier said that Glencore was in talks with Rio Tinto’s biggest shareholder, Chinalco, to gauge its interest in a potential deal. These discussions had taken place in recent weeks, sources said.

Others in the sector were also on the rise, including Anglo American, Antofagasta, Randgold Resources, BHP Billiton and Centamin. Antofagasta was given a lift by an upgrade to ‘neutral’ by Nomura.

However, leading the downside were airlines Easyjet and IAG after a strong performance the previous session. Pharmaceutical heavyweights Shire, Astrazeneca and Glaxosmithkline were also providing a drag.

Tesco was making decent gains as the stock continues to recover after its recent slump. The supermarket company, according to reports, has asked another member of its senior management to step down in the wake of an investigation into its accounting practices.

Tesco was also making headlines on reports it has been contacted by TPG, a private equity buyout company, about potentially acquiring Dunnhumby, its data analysis unit.

Defence group BAE Systems was being weighed down by a ratings downgrade by Cantor Fitzgerald to ‘hold’.

Oil and gas group Cairn Energy has discovered oil at its FAN-1 exploration well offshore Senegal, causing shares to surge. The discovery “materially upgrades the prospectivity” of the Sangomar Deep Block, the company said.

Lower demand in the US and China has hit telecoms tester Spirent Communications, which warned that revenues and profits in the third and fourth quarters would be lower than previously guided. The stock dropped 17 per cent early on.

FTSE 100 – Risers
Rio Tinto (RIO) 3,147.00p +5.00%
Anglo American (AAL) 1,374.00p +1.93%
Tesco (TSCO) 179.65p +1.64%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 717.00p +1.49%
Randgold Resources Ltd. (RRS) 4,206.00p +1.28%
BHP Billiton (BLT) 1,694.50p +1.13%
Fresnillo (FRES) 753.50p +1.07%
Standard Chartered (STAN) 1,139.50p +0.93%
Glencore (GLEN) 341.90p +0.75%
Travis Perkins (TPK) 1,656.00p +0.36%

FTSE 100 – Fallers
Schroders (SDR) 2,275.00p -3.23%
easyJet (EZJ) 1,427.00p -2.73%
International Consolidated Airlines Group SA (CDI) (IAG) 362.30p -2.42%
Carnival (CCL) 2,435.00p -2.40%
WPP (WPP) 1,184.00p -2.15%
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) 2,279.00p -2.15%
Shire Plc (SHP) 5,325.00p -1.93%
TUI Travel (TT.) 390.30p -1.76%
Compass Group (CPG) 966.50p -1.68%
Whitbread (WTB) 4,076.00p -1.55%

Source: ShareCast

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