FTSE falls as recovery fears rise
Experient shares peaked in six months after the consumer finance company raised its annual outlook and said more people were applying for loans and credit cards.
The company, which checks people’s credit data and helps lenders manage credit risk, said its free memberships jumped to 44 million and first-quarter revenue jumped 31% from the previous level. last year. The action finished 73p higher at £ 30.50.
Experian’s 2.5% gain in the London stock market, however, was overshadowed by Avastthe soaring 18pc share price.
The Prague-based cybersecurity firm rose 91.4p to 595.6p, after bosses said it was in “advanced talks” over a merger with US software firm NortonLifeLock.
Despite the gains made by the first two, the FTSE 100 lost 79.17 points to 7012.02. Energy stocks were the main drag on the index as they followed the fall in oil prices.
PA closed from 8.7p to 296.1p and Royal Dutch Shell fell from 35.8 pence to £ 14.07. Brent fell 0.3% and traded at $ 74.50 late in the day, after reports suggested the UAE and Saudi Arabia resolved their ongoing dispute over oil policy.
OPEC + delegates said the two oil-producing nations were on the verge of reaching a deal that would give the UAE a more generous production limit, while allowing the wider alliance to re-establish interrupted production.
However, news of the deal coincided with growing concern over oversupply as cases of the virus increased around the world and data from the United States showed demand for oil slowing.
“On the demand side of the oil balance sheet, the madness of the delta variant of the coronavirus is causing headaches among investors,” said Tamas Varga, analyst at PVM Oil Associates.
Travel stocks continued their downward trajectory, with easyJet and AGI trading at their lowest levels since February during the day, as uncertainty over travel rules and restrictions continues.
Easyjet lost 17p to close at 822.6p, while British Airways owner IAG lost 5.6p to 165.4p. The low-cost Jet2 airliner also hit another 9-month low, falling 24.5 pence to £ 10.75.
Elsewhere, shares of the AIM-listed fashion retailer Asos plunged 18% after the company warned of volatility induced by the upcoming pandemic and said profits were being curtailed by freight costs and disruption of the global supply chain. The action closed lower 853p at £ 38.54
The pound sterling also fell 0.2 pc against the dollar on Thursday, ignoring strong economic data showing 356,000 jobs were created between May and June and focusing instead on the impending end of Covid-19 restrictions.
“Sterling feels like it’s a price tag as the economy reopens too soon,” said Justin Onuekwusi, portfolio manager at Legal & General Investment Management.
Against the dollar, the pound was at $ 1.3835. Against the euro, the pound lost 0.1pc to 0.8531p.