FTSE stumbles as China slowdown sparks fears

Sat, 20th Apr 2013

The top share index in the UK opened the week with a whimper on Monday as disappointing GDP results from China helped to dent sentiment and weaken risk appetite. By the end of trade, the FTSE 100 was lower by 0.64 per cent, reaching 6343.

Lower than predicted GDP results from China sent investors fleeing from riskier assets as concerns increased over whether the global economic recovery was suffering a setback. With the US still suffering from the fallout of a set of poor results, many experts are questioning how robust the global revival has really been.

WIth risk appetite far removed from the menu, defensive stocks were on the up, although the whole market suffered heavy losses earlier in the day. At its worst, the FTSE 100 was down by 84 points, a drop of 1.34 per cent, but by close of trade it had managed to haul itself up with a loss of just 41 points.

The uncertainty in trading saw the top places in the leaderboard dominated by the stocks which traditionally fare much better during difficult economic times. In contrast, the bottom of the table was dominated by riskier assets, including many miners.

GlaxoSmithKline was the top-performing stock on Monday, rising by 3.89 percent. Pharmaceuticals often prove to be popular when the economic climate is far less certain, alongside utility sticks. The owner of British Gas, Centrica, was firmly in the blue whilst sector peer United Utilites was the best of the bunch, higher by 2.50 per cent.

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