The FTSE 100 fell on Thursday as the market digested UK economic data that had been ravaged by COVID-19 and a risk-off tone was set by concerns over China rifts.
The FTSE 100 was trading at 6,055, down 0.19%, going into the close on Thursday.
“On one hand, it was a relatively good morning for UK data. The flash manufacturing PMI rose from 32.6 to 40.6, while the services reading bounced from a truly horrific 13.4 to 27.8. On the other hand, the manufacturing and services PMIs still came in at 40.6 and 27.8, the awfulness of those readings only slightly dulled by comparisons to the month previous,” said Connor Campbell, analyst at Spreadex.
“The situation was the same across the Eurozone, with the French, German and region-wide PMIs all improving month-on-month. In fact, all bar the German manufacturing reading also came in higher than forecast.”
“However, it was little comfort to investors. With Trump ploughing ahead with his daily twitter assaults on China, but this time combing it with a 20-page report detailing the superpower’s ‘malign activities’ in an attempt to take heat off his own mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic, investors are worried about the state of things between Washington and Beijing,” Campbell said.
Whitbread was the top faller on Thursday after the Premier Inn owner announced a rights issue.
Rolls Royce was the top riser as the engine maker said they were going to cut 9,000 jobs ,whilst easyJet rose on plans to start flights again in mid-June.