US rate rise may be on hold says Fed VC

Mon close: UK stocks bounced into positive territory after a US Federal Reserve official hinted that interest rates may not rise in September as many expect.

Fed vice chairman Stanley Fischer told Bloomberg he doesn’t expect the first rate hike in nine years until inflation returns to the central bank’s 2% target.

About £100m was wiped off the value of Esure after it was hit by rising accident claims. Shares in the owner of the Sheilas’ Wheels brand and Gocompare price comparison website were down 25½p to 240p as underlying pretax profit came in 21.3% below 2014 at £46.5m.

The FTSE 250 group’s motor underwriting profit fell from £17.1m to £3.3m after “a marked increase in frequency of small personal injury claims.”

Oil producers, including Royal Dutch Shell and BG Group, fell as Brent crude hovered just under $49 per barrel, the lowest level since January.

Prudential slumped a day ahead of its half-year results after announcing the appointment of Penny James as chief risk officer to replace John Foley.

Shire, on the other hand, was a top riser on news it is close to starting takeover negotiations with Baxalta, just days after the US group rejected its $31bn approach.

The FTSE 100  closed up 0.27% at 6,736.22.

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