The FTSE 100 nose dived through the 5,500 mark today for the first time since November 1998. Sentime...
The FTSE 100 nose dived through the 5,500 mark today for the first time since November 1998. Sentiment was soured after the US Federal Reserve decided to cut interest rates only by a half point yesterday, a move which disappointed Wall Street and sent US stocks spiralling.
To worsen matters, US markets are expected to open lower in a continuation of yesterday's selling.
Early afternoon, the FTSE 100 sank 132.5 points to 5514.3.
Mining stocks enjoyed gains in the FTSE 100, although modest, excited by a press report suggesting that Alcan may launch a counter-bid to the BHP deal. Rio Tinto fared best up 18p to 1240p.
Among a downpour of fallers telecom stocks weighed heaviest, topped by Colt Telecom down 105p to 760p. Energis followed as it lost 36p to 285p but bitterly complained that heavy selling by German shareholder Distefora breaks an agreement made between the two companies.
BT shares fell below the £5 mark for the first time since January 1998. The group was also slammed by the press for cancelling last night's dinner with key investors. The stock dropped 36p to 486.5p.
Elsewhere amongst the tiddlers, shares in Pure Entertainment were savaged and left for dead as the internet gaming group announced the closure of its website freeloader.com. The group blamed a lack of revenue from its international websites and difficulties in raising further funds for the failure. The group's next step is to sell its technology and return surplus funds to shareholders. Alternatively it might remain as a cash shell. Shares bombed 10.75p to 3.25p.
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