StockMarketWire.com - Investors were worried about Natwest owner Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) following a huge profit decline at high street HSBC (HSBA).

HSBC (HSBC) reported a number of writedowns and one-off costs pushed 2016 profit 62% lower, causing the stock to fall 5.3%.

As a result, RBS was marked 1.6% lower ahead of its final results on Friday.

As the banks are among the top constituents of the FTSE 100, the index remained in the red at 7,274.

West Texas Intermediate and Brent crude oil rallied over 1.4% to $54.36 and $57 per barrel, respectively.

Gold was flat at $1,236 per ounce and copper climbed 1.6% to $6,062 per tonne.

In Asia, the Nikkei 225 advanced 0.7% on Monday as yen weakened, which released some pressure on exporters.

The Hang Seng in Hong Kong by contrast was in reverse gear.

The SSE Composite in Shanghai closed a modest 0.4% higher at 3,253.

Wall Street had a good start to trading on Tuesday as Asda owner Wal-Mart's better than expected profits pushed the S&P 500 and Dow Jones higher.

FTSE 100 RISERS AND FALLERS

Copper miner Anglo-American (AAL) revealed a 34% reduction in net debt to $8.5bn and earnings up by a quarter.

Iron ore miner BHP Billiton (BLT) also rose as a strong set of half year results announced a return to profit, a better-than-expected hike in the dividend and a reduction in debt.

However, the share price was tempered by a cautious outlook statement that referred to near-term pressures on coal and iron ore prices.

Private healthcare firm Mediclinic (MDC) needed a shot in the arm following a warning on full year profit due to continued weak performance in Abu Dhabi.

Investors checked into Holiday Inn owner InterContinental Hotels (IHG) as its underlying earnings per share for 2016 advanced by over a fifth. A $400m special dividend and 11% hike in the ordinary payout also pushed the stock higher.

FTSE 250 RISERS AND FALLERS

Oil services business Wood Group (WG.) slid 8.4% to 749p as exceptional items caused 2016 profit to fall 61.8% to $34.4m. Management said it 'remains cautious on the near term outlook'.

Housebuilder Galliford Try (GFRD) reported a 19% advance in first half pre-tax profit to £63m, although this failed to move the share price either way.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Bezant Resources (BZT) said its Mankayan copper-gold project in the Philippines as it is deemed to be in a 'watershed area'. The government is trying to be economically sensitive to areas with good water supply. The stock became a late faller as it declined 10.9%.

X-ray imaging firm Image Scan (IGE) jumped 15% on a robust first quarter trading update. It showed a strong order book, development of new products and trading in line with expectations.

Mineral explorer North River Resources (NRRP) proposed to cancel its listing on AIM as it hopes to preserve more cash for its zinc-lead mining project in Namibia. The stock crashed 58% to 4p.

Data insight provider Trakm8 (TRAK) warned operating profit will be significantly below full year 2016, which was blamed on new revenues being delayed into full year 2018. Investors were shaken by the news as over a fifth of the company was wiped out when the stock plummeted.

A deliberate reduction in contract manufacturing for third parties also led to £2.5m less revenues this year.


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