FTSE Falls as Media Sell-Off Spreads

Mon, 10th Aug 2015

The FTSE 100 slipped on Friday as the media sell-off which began in the US spread across the Atlantic, with shares in ITV being hit particularly hard.

During the preceding week, several US media companies, including Viacom and 21st Century Fox, have struggled following signs of weakness in the cable TV industry. ITV has been purchasing US production studios, so fears of the weakness spread to the UK company, dragging shares down by 3.38 percent to make it the poorest performer in the FTSE 100.

By the close of trading the UK’s leading index was down by 28.6 points, sitting at 6,718.49, after having spent most of the day in negative territory. The mid-caps played out a similar story, with shares in the bookmaker William Hill shedding 6.47 percent after it reported a 35 percent fall in half-year profits, following changes to betting taxes.

In the small-caps, UK Mail shed 14.15 percent after it issued a profit warning, noting that it had experienced problems following a move to its new parcel sorting facility. The company anticipates that full-year results will fall below expectations, and says that underlying pre-tax profits can be expected to be between £10m and £12m.

US economic data showed that the country added 215,000 jobs during the month of July, and that the unemployment rate is holding steady at 5.3 percent, a seven year low. This means that there is still a real possibility that there will be a US interest rate rise in September.

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