The FTSE 100 fell 50 points, or just under 0.9%, in early trading on Tuesday as investors got their first opportunity to act on a disappointing US jobs report on Friday.
The UK's leading share index was 49.6 points, or 0.87%, lower at 10.20am, following the US non-farm payrolls data that failed to meet expectations.
Figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics released while equity markets were closed on Friday showed a gain of 120,000 jobs in March, just over half the consensus figure.
That prompted a sell-off in yesterday's trading, with the S&P 500 closing down 1.1% at 1,382. Asian markets continued the fall overnight, with the Hang Seng dropping 1.2% to 20,356. The Nikkei traded flat on the day, down 0.1% to 9,538.
In the UK, the FTSE was led down by engineer Petrofac, dropping 3.5% to £16.94 after analysts at Liberum cut the stock from buy to hold. ICAP was the next largest faller, down 3.3% at 366.2p.
Gold miner Randgold rose 10% to £56.55 following the announcement of a political settlement in Mali. The company's shares fell 25% last month after a military coup in the African nation where several of its mines are located.
Elsewhere, bond investors continued to put pressure on Spain, with benchmark 10-year yields rising another 8 basis points to 5.86%. CDS spreads widened 16 basis points to 478bps, close to the November record of 487bps, according to Markit.
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