London's blue chips dropped sharply on Friday morning with the mass bank downgrade by Moody's weighing on sentiment across Europe.
Credit ratings agency Moody's has downgraded 15 major banks and financial instiutions, including the major lenders on Britain's High Street. Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Barclays, Lloyds and HSBC all got the downgrade treatment as the agency completed its review of the global banking sector. Barclays' rating was downgraded by two notches while the ratings of the others were ratcheted down by one level.
Spain's banks will need €51-62bn euros in additional capital in a worst case scenario, according to the independent consultants Oliver Wyman and Roland Berger hired by the government to perform a new round of stress tests on its financial sector.
However, analysts at Barclays Capital said that the situation in Spain will remain "unsettled" for the near future. "Some reactivation of secondary market purchases, coupled with further ECB actions (a rate cut of 50 basis points on July 5th and collateral easing), along with fundamental progress at the June 28-29th meeting, is essential for the unstable equilibrium not to deteriorate further or for some long-lasting improvement in Spanish bonds, in our view," they said.
In other news, Eurozone finance ministers plan on releasing by the end of the month the €1bn in bailout funds to Greece that was withheld due to concerns over the June 17th elections, according to Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker.
FTSE 100: Resources stocks lead the fallers
Oil services stocks and oil producers dropped on the back of falling crude prices: Petrofac, Tullow Oil and BG Group were suffering heavy losses. Meanwhile, mining groups Vedanta, ENRC, Kazakhmys, Fresnillo and Randgold were also lower as metals prices declined.
BHP Billiton was out of favour after giving the go-ahead to a massive investment on its coal operations in New South Wales, Australia. The group is spending US$845m to sustain operations at Illawarra Coal by establishing a replacement mining area at the Appin Mine.
Losses in the banking sector were only modest despite the mass bank downgrade by Moody's. RBS fell slightly after saying it disagreed with the ratings change, saying the change is "backward-looking and does not give adequate credit for the substantial improvements the group has made to its balance sheet, funding and risk profile." HSBC and Barclays were also in the red.
However, Lloyds made gains after saying that Moody's has recognised "the substantial momentum we have made in de-risking our balance sheet and delivering on our strategy." In a separate report, Moody's left Lloyds's short-term P-1 rating unchanged, but the longer-term senior debt and deposit ratings have been lowered by one notch to A2 from A1, and the standalone credit assessment has also been lowered by one notch to baa2 from baa1.
FTSE 250: Cobham falls after loses Voyager conversion to Spain
Cobham Aviation Services, a division of defence technology contractor Cobham will not be converting the remaining UK Voyager aircraft. The company in charge of the project, AirTanker, has decided to relocate the conversion operation to Spain. The news sent shares lower early on.
Property company London and Stamford fell after buying a stake in a residential block adjacent to the Chelsea Barracks development in south-west London.
UK bookie William Hill edged higher after being granted non-restricted gaming licences by the the Nevada Gaming Commission, clearing the way for the company to start operating in the USA.
FTSE 100 jumps 1.3 per cent after hitting two-month low; Aggreko jumps on full-year guidance; Miners erase losses after slow start; Chinese manufacturing data disappoints, Eurozone PMIs impress. [Mon 17:04]
Sportswear and equipment retailer Sports Direct slumped today despite delivering a near-17 per cent jump in underlying profits during its first half, driven by an increase in online and international sales. However, the company did say that '[current] trading has now reverted to management's original expectations' following the outperformance in the first half. The group also revealed that long-running Finance Director, Bob Mellors, who was appointed in 2004, is to retire at [12 Dec '13]
Datafeed and UK data supplied by NETbuilder and Interactive Data.
While London South East do their best to maintain the high quality of the information displayed on this site,
we cannot be held responsible for any loss due to incorrect information found here. All information is provided free of charge, 'as-is', and you use it at your own risk!
The contents of all 'Chat' messages should not be construed as advice and represent the opinions of the authors, not those of London South East Limited, or its affiliates.
London South East does not authorise or approve this content, and reserves the right to remove items at its discretion.