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London close: Stocks slide as oil prices decline after OPEC meeting

LONDON (ShareCast) – (ShareCast News) – London stocks finished lower on Friday as oil prices slid and as a better-than-estimated US non-farm payrolls report added to bets the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates this month.
Oil and gas stocks were under pressure after the price of crude fell as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries maintained the ‘current’ production level last published at 30 million bpd. However, OPEC declined to offer an exact number on Friday at the conclusion of its oil ministers’ summit in Vienna, Austria.

Following the conclusion of proceedings, Secretary General Abdalla Salem El-Badri said, “OPEC will wait and see how the market develops over the next six months and saw no need to alter the current production level during a period of market adjustment.”

Brent crude declined 1.8% to $43.06 per barrel while West Texas Intermediate plunged 2.7% to $40.01 per barrel at 1639 GMT.

Among the biggest fallers on the FTSE 350 were BP, Royal Dutch Shell (Xetra: R6C1.DEnews) , Tullow Oil (LSE: TLW.Lnews) and Nostrum Oil & Gas (Stuttgart: 3NO.SGnews) .

Meanwhile, US non-farm payrolls in November rose by 211,000 compared with October’s upwardly revised 298,000 gain and with analysts’ expectations for a 200,000 reading, according to the Labor Department.

The unemployment rate was unchanged at 5%, as analysts had forecast, while the labour-force participation rate rose by one tenth of a percentage point to 62.5%.

Average hourly wages increased 0.2% month-on-month in November, in line with consensus but slightly below the 0.4% gain registered in October.

“The 211,000 gain in November’s non-farm payrolls, along with the 35,000 upward revision to the gains in the preceding two months, would appear to seal an interest rate hike at the Fed’s upcoming FOMC meeting, which concludes on 16 December,” according to Capital Economics.

In other US data, the trade gap widened to $43.9bn in October from September’s upwardly revised deficit of $42.5bn as exports declined, according to the Department of Commerce.

Elsewhere, there was positive news from Germany, where factory orders beat expectations in October, and Japan, where consumer confidence grew for the second consecutive month in November.

German retail activity, however, contracted in November with Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKTnews) ‘s purchasing managers’ index falling to 49.6 from 52.4 in October. The Eurozone retail PMI also dropped to 48.5 in November from 51.3 a month earlier. A reading below 50 signals a contraction, while a level above that indicates expansion.

Among companies, Premier Inn and Costa Coffee owner Whitbread (LSE: WTB.Lnews) dropped after Barclays (LSE: BARC.Lnews) downgraded the stock to ‘equalweight’ from ‘overweight’ and cut the price target to 5,200p from 5,800p.

Inmarsat (Other OTC: IMASYnews) also sat in the red after Citigroup (NYSE: Cnews) downgraded the stock back to ‘neutral’ from ‘buy’ but retained its £11.50 target price.

Berkeley Group jumped after saying it is well-placed to meet its targets for the next three years and to meet its enhanced longer term commitment to return a further £12 per share to shareholders by 2021.

easyJet gained after reporting a 9.6% increase in passengers for the November despite the situation in Sharm el-Sheikh and heavy fog at the beginning of the month.

JD Sports Fashion (LSE: JD.Lnews) was higher after it said late on Thursday that it expects headline profit before tax and exceptional items for the current financial year to exceed consensus market expectations of £125m by £10m.

Power company Drax was sharply lower, giving back some of the gains from earlier in the week when it surged on news that the European Commission had approved the UK government’s support for converting the Lynemouth power station from coal to biomass.

Market Movers

FTSE 100 (UKX) 6,228.97 -0.73%
FTSE 250 (MCX) 17,354.50 -0.21%
techMARK (TASX) 3,203.43 -0.19%

FTSE 100 – Risers

Berkeley Group Holdings (The) (BKG) 3,596.00p 7.28%
Sage Group (LSE: SGE.Lnews) (SGE) 611.50p 5.16%
easyJet (EZJ) 1,672.00p 2.58%
Randgold Resources Ltd. (RRS) 4,283.00p 2.49%
International Consolidated Airlines Group SA (CDI) (IAG) 582.50p 1.30%
Taylor Wimpey (LSE: TW.Lnews) (TW.) 198.60p 1.27%
GKN (GKN (LSE: GKN.Lnews) ) 295.80p 1.27%
Barratt Developments (LSE: BDEV.Lnews) (BDEV) 613.00p 1.24%
Merlin Entertainments (LSE: MERL.Lnews) (MERL) 428.10p 1.09%
Aberdeen Asset Management (Other OTC: ABDNFnews) (ADN) 304.00p 0.93%

FTSE 100 – Fallers

Glencore (Amsterdam: GX8.ASnews) (GLEN) 87.29p -3.25%
Mondi (EUREX: MDIF.EXnews) (MNDI) 1,491.00p -3.24%
Whitbread (WTB) 4,573.00p -2.91%
Anglo American (LSE: AAL.Lnews) (AAL) 376.05p -2.79%
Royal Dutch Shell ‘A’ (RDSA) 1,584.50p -2.46%
Pearson (Amsterdam: PR8.ASnews) (PSON) 782.00p -2.43%
BP (BP.) 359.70p -2.40%
Royal Dutch Shell ‘B’ (RDSB) 1,597.00p -1.96%
Intu Properties (Other OTC: CCRGFnews) (INTU (Swiss: OXIGTU.SWnews) ) 311.00p -1.68%
Antofagasta (LSE: ANTO.Lnews) (ANTO) 492.90p -1.62%

FTSE 250 – Risers

JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 1,055.00p 4.66%
esure Group (ESUR) 258.30p 3.07%
Allied Minds (Other OTC: ALLWFnews) (ALM) 442.80p 2.98%
Enterprise Inns (LSE: ETI.Lnews) (ETI (Shenzhen: 002005.SZnews) ) 107.00p 2.79%
Bwin.party Digital Entertainment (BPTY) 108.00p 2.66%
Vesuvius (VSVS) 341.00p 2.56%
Foxtons Group (LSE: FOXT.Lnews) (FOXT) 179.90p 2.51%
NMC Health (LSE: NMC.Lnews) (NMC (Other OTC: NMCXnews) ) 912.00p 2.30%
Betfair Group (LSE: BET.Lnews) (BET) 3,772.00p 2.19%
Acacia Mining (LSE: ABG.Lnews) (ACA) 184.30p 2.05%

FTSE 250 – Fallers

CLS Holdings (LSE: CLI.Lnews) (CLI) 1,666.00p -7.70%
Drax Group (LSE: DRX.Lnews) (DRX) 229.80p -5.97%
Tullow Oil (TLW) 188.20p -5.47%
Big Yellow Group (BYG) 808.50p -3.46%
Weir Group (Other OTC: WEIGFnews) (WEIR) 1,070.00p -3.43%
Keller Group (LSE: KLR.Lnews) (KLR) 837.00p -3.13%
Investec (INVP) 533.50p -3.09%
AA (AA (Other OTC: AATDFnews) .) 281.60p -2.80%
Petrofac Ltd. (PFC) 809.00p -2.71%
Savills (SVS) 900.00p -2.49%

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