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Fri City brief: Miners hit, pushing FTSE to further fall

The UK stock market continued its losing streak into a fourth day on a bad day for commodities.

The FTSE100, which is heavily-weighted in mining and commodity stocks, closed down 40.31 points (-0.58%) at 6,855.02 well short of its the record closing high of 7,037.67 reached on Monday.

Iron ore prices touched a new six-year low on Friday after industrial profits in China fell 4.2% year-on-year in February.

Commodity giant Glencore slumped 3.05% to 288.15p, while Anglo American lost 3.03% to 1,044p and Randgold Resources lost 2.98% to fall to 4,756p. Weir Group was the biggest faller, down 3.55% to 1,714p.

Bank of England governor Mark Carney added to the downward pressure after hinting at a rise in interest rates, prompting a 0.3% rise in the pound against the dollar.

A Nationwide survey showed the annual growth in UK house prices slowed to an 18-month low of 5.1%.

Royal Bank of Scotland fell back after confirming it will be offloading the international arm of its Coutts private banking business to Switzerland’s Union Bancaire Privée. RBS said it expects to take a£200m goodwill write-down.

Barratt Developments was lower after announcing that chief executive Mark Clare has stepped down, even though he was immediately replaced by finance director David Thomas.


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