UPDATE 2-London's FTSE 100 drops on coronavirus cases, stronger pound

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
UPDATE 2-London's FTSE 100 drops on coronavirus cases, stronger pound
Credit: © Reuters.

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* Kingfisher surges on strong sales growth

* Hut Group raises 2021 revenue forecast

* Pound jumps to six-week high against euro

* FTSE 100 down 0.7%, FTSE 250 drops 0.3% (Updates to close)

By Shashank Nayar

Jan 12 (Reuters) - British shares dropped on Tuesday as worries about increasing cases of COVID-19 and its impact on the economy coupled with a stronger pound overshadowed a set of upbeat earnings forecasts.

The FTSE 100 .FTSE fell 0.5%, led by pharmaceutical .FTNMX4570 and household .FTNMX3720 stocks, with consumer goods group Unilever ULVR.L the biggest drag on the index.

Finance Minister Rishi Sunak said on Monday that the economy would get worse before it got better, with Britain in its third lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19. are definitely more cautious about the near term impact of the fresh lockdowns, but the market is better prepared to deal with it as opposed to the first lockdown last year," Michael Baker, an analyst at ETX Capital, said.

The pound jumped to a six-week high, weighing on the export-heavy index, as comments from Bank of England's Governor Andrew Bailey on negative interest rates dampened some expectations of sub-zero rates in Britain. a rare bright spot, home improvement retailer Kingfisher KGF.L rose 1.8% to the top of the FTSE 100 after reporting strong trade across its markets. retailer The Hut Group THG.L gained 1% after saying it expects its 2021 revenue to be 30%-35% higher than 2020, underpinned by the acquisition of Dermstore.com and a surge in demand for its beauty products. software maker Playtech PTEC.L jumped 4.3% after saying it expected its 2020 performance to be ahead of expectations, driven by its financial trading arm, and casino, poker, bingo and betting businesses. British consumer spending fell in December at the fastest rate in six months, with pubs and restaurants hard hit by a resurgence of coronavirus cases, a survey showed.

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