- London shares ended the short trading week on a negative note, with miners chiming in among the biggest fallers as the price of crude tapered through the afternoon. Europe was lower and Wall St was mixed after US jobs data. Financial stocks were also southbound.

Often-volatile Glencore (GLEN) slumped 4.77% to 149.8p, while Antofagasta (ANTO) shed 3.3% to 453.9p. More miners followed, as did oil majors. BP (BP.) fell 1.81% to 343.8p, while Shell (RSDA) ebbed 0.95% to 1668p. In energy, United Utilities (UU.) dropped 2.33% to 901.5p.

FTSE 100 closed down 28.85 points, or 0.47%, to 6146.05. FTSE 250 was down 82.44, or 0.49%, to 16,843.7. Both were off earlier lows, and a good deal below three-month highs seen earlier this week. At 4.41pm, WTI crude was at 37.01/bbl. Brent was at USD38.76/bbl. Gold was at USD1214/oz.

Standard Chartered (STAN) guided banks with a slide of 3.96% to 453.85p, while insurers traced Legal and General (LGEN), off 1.74% to 231.1p, and investment specialists followed Schroders (SDR), lower 2.2% to 2624p. Plenty more financials followed.

Retail and supermarkets were mixed. Tesco (TSCO) eased 0.94% to 190p, while Sainsbury (SBRY) rose 0.11% to 276.6p as its cash-and-shares offer for Home Retail (HOME) has been recommended. Also mixed were consumer goods, commercial property and house builders. Leisure stocks rose, as did multiple pharmas.


Herencia Resources (HER), up 116.67% to 0.03p, said directors have noted the recent movement in the share price and again confirm major shareholders have indicated their intention to provide additional loan monies prior to April 6.

Cadogan Petroleum (CAD), down 3.8% to 9.5p, does not intend to make an offer for Ascent Resources (AST), down 70.71% to 1.8p, citing the heady and expectant rise in the latter company's share price.

Marlowe Plc (MRL), up 27.78% to 172.5p, said the Registrar of Companies in Belize has confirmed the merger with Marlowe Holdings Ltd is now effective. Its shares resumed trade today. It also outlined GBP5m of financing facilities.


Nationwide's UK house price index (HPI) for March rose 0.8%, against an expected 0.5% and from 0.3% previously. Meantime, euro zone's final manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) for March came in at 51.6, ahead of the flash estimate and previous reading of 51.4.

Stateside, total US non-farm payroll employment rose 215,000 in March, said US Bureau of Labor Statistics, adding the US unemployment rate was virtually unchanged at 5.0% in March. Average hourly earnings for US workers on private non-farm payrolls rose 7 cents to USD25.43 in March.

The Institute for Supply Management's Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to 51.8% in March, from 49.5% in February. ISM's Manufacturing Prices Index rose to 51.5% in March, from 38.5% in February. Meanwhile, Markit's seasonally adjusted final US Manufacturing PMI for March rose to 51.5, from 51.3 in February.

US construction spending during February fell to USD1144bn, 0.5% below the revised January estimate of USD1150.1bn, US Department of Commerce said. In other news, University of Michigan's revised survey for March showed the forecast for US one year inflation unchanged at 2.7%. US consumer sentiment rose to 91.0 in March, from 90.0, UoM's survey showed.


StratMin (STGR), up 22.73% to 2.13p, has entered a heads of terms that will see Bass Metals Ltd acquire the outstanding 93.75% of Graphmada Mauritius, which it does not already own, for a staged cash, equity and royalty consideration of up to AUD15.25m.

Nakama (NAK), down 22.32% to 2.18p, has warned of a period of reduced profitability for a six-month period of what it described as significant change. Nighthawk Energy (HAWK), down 30.13% to 1.38p, has received notification of its quarterly borrowing base redetermination under its reserves based loan with Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

North Midland Construction (NMD), up 16.38% to 135p, has swung to a FY pretax profit of GBP0.6m, from a year-ago loss of GBP2.97m. Revenue improved to GBP217.6m, from GBP193.2m.

Range Resources (RRL), up 12% to 0.28p, said the MD 250 development well in Trinidad was successfully drilled to a total depth of 4100 feet by March 28. Log evaluations are presently underway.

VAST Resources (VAST), down 12.73% to 0.24p, said that Crede CG III Ltd has elected to convert 38.5m warrants issued under the initial subscription. No net cash was due to Vast as a result of the warrants being exercised.

Altona Energy (ANR), down 10.64% to 1.05p, said that at its AGM today to agree the company's new share-option scheme and approve an amendment to the company's articles of association, all resolutions were duly passed.

Cyprotex (CRX), up 9.29% to 100p, is implementing a strategic review that will consider all available options including a possible offer for the company or a strategic partnership. It posted a rise in FY underlying EBITDA to GBP3.4m, from GBP0.61m.

Other stocks in the news included Drax (DRX), Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BVA), RusHydro (HYDR), Arrow Global (ARW), Fyffes (FFY), Judges Scientific (JDG), Quantum Pharma (QP.), Adamas (ADAM), Ten Alps (TAL), Empiric Student Property (ESP), Vedanta (VED), Euromoney Institutional Investor (ERM), Kibo (KIBO), UDG (UDG), Keywords Studios (KWS), MedaPhor (MED), ECR Minerals (ECR), Norcros (NXR), ULS (ULS), Scancell (SCLP) and Inmarsat (ISAT). Story provided by