London stocks sink as new coronavirus strain shuts UK

  • Reuters
London stocks sink as new coronavirus strain shuts UK

(For a Reuters live blog on U.S., UK and European stock markets, click LIVE/ or type LIVE/ in a news window)

* FTSE 100 down 2.1%, FTSE 250 off 2.8%

Dec 21 (Reuters) - London's blue-chips slumped on Monday to a near three-week low as a fast-spreading new coronavirus strain prompted tougher restrictions, while a fresh ban on UK travellers hammered airline and oil stocks.

The FTSE 100 .FTSE fell 2.1% to touch its lowest since Dec. 2, though a near 2% plunge in the pound capped losses on the exporter-heavy index. GBP/

BP BP.L and Royal Dutch Shell RDSa.L were the biggest drags on the index, shedding almost 5% each as crude prices slumped on worries about fuel demand. O/R

British Airways-owner IAG ICAG.L , Wizz Air Holdings WIZZ.L and easyJet EZJ.L fell between 11% and 16%, while InterContinental Hotels Group IHG.L dropped 4% as many of Britain's European neighbours imposed a ban on travel to the United Kingdom. domestically focused FTSE 250 .FTMC , considered a barometer for Brexit sentiment, shed 2.8% with no Brexit trade deal in sight. banking stocks such as Lloyds LLOY.L and Barclays BARC.L tumbled over 5%.

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