StockMarketWire.com - London stocks opened firmly lower on a gang of falling banks, financials and house builders in a week crammed with guaranteed to be closely watched policy meetings by the US Federal Reserve, Bank of England and Bank of Japan, along with a convoy of other economic data.

Lloyds Banking (LLOY) was down 2.01% to 65.7p, with Barclays (BARC) falling 1.93% to 166.13p and Standard Chartered (STAN) ebbing 1.68% to 507.25p. Among other financials, Standard Life (SL.) dropped 1.63% to 311.05p and Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) slipped 1.5% to 1249p.

House builders followed Taylor Wimpey (TW.), down 1.47% to 180.5p, and Barratt Developments (BDEV), off 1.05% to 541.25p. Miners were on the back foot, but off the overall clip. Glencore (GLEN) eased 1.27% to 132.4p, while Anglo American (AAL), dropped 1.11% to 635.35p.

Soon after the open, FTSE 100 was down 33.28 points, or 0.54%, to 6082.48. FTSE 250 was lower 146.85, or 0.87%, to 16,680.6. Both were at 3-4-week lows. At 8.30am, WTI crude was down at $48.54/bbl and Brent was lower at $50.09/bbl. Gold was up at $1285 an ounce. This followed a firmly lower Europe and Asia, while Wall St dropped overnight Friday.

Other blue chips surrendering ground included high-street retail, commercial property and utilities. Burberry (BRBY) lost 1.22% to 1055p, Hammerson (HMSO) fell 0.83% to 566.25p, British Land (BLND) dropped 0.75% to 723p, and Dixons Carphone (DC.) lost 0.89% to 408.75p.

Overall, about 82 blue chips were lower, with 18 making mildly positive progress. Randgold (RRS) guided with a 1.62% rise to 6732.5p, while Fresnillo (FRES) added 0.91% to 1225p. While most supermarkets tapered, Sainsbury (SBRY) added 0.35% to 242.65p.

BIGGER MOVERS

Fitbug Holdings (FITB), down 29.63% to 0.48p, saw revenues for the year ended 31 December fall to £1.3m, from £2.3m in 2014, and pre-tax losses rise to £6.3m, from £3.8m.

Triad Group (TRD), up 28.71% to 32.5p, has more than doubled its FY pretax profit to £0.86m, from £0.35m. Revenue was £28.3m, from £23.5m. Water Intelligence (WATR), up 18.64% to 70p, has improved its FY pretax profit to $0.97m, from $0.59m, and made a very positive start to 2016. Revenue also rose, to $8.8m, from $7.2m.

Golden Saint (GSR), down 14.29% to 0.08p, has raised £400,000, gross, through a placing of 571.4m new shares at 0.07p each. Proceeds would be used to continue its bulk-sampling operations and for general working capital purposes.

LONDON HIGHLIGHTS

PhotonStar LED (PSL), up 4.76% to 2.75p, announces the renewal of a rolling one-year exclusive supply agreement with a major UK housebuilder, to supply LED lighting fixtures for all of the housebuilder's new homes.

Independent Oil and Gas (IOG), up 4.35% to 18p, has signed a sale and purchase agreement with Verus Petroleum Ltd to conditionally acquire 100% of the shares of Oyster Petroleum Limited, a subsidiary of Verus.

SDX Energy (SDX), up 4.44% to 23.5p, confirms that the seismic acquisition programme at its South Disouq asset completed on June 12.

Union Jack Oil (UJO), up 3.23% to 0.16p, has agreed with Egdon Resources (EDR) to acquire an 8.33% economic interest in PEDL182, in Lincolnshire on the western margin on the Humber Basin containing the Broughton North Prospect.

ReNeuron (RENE), down 3.43% to 3.38p, has completed patient recruitment in the Phase II clinical trial (PISCES II) of its CTX cell therapy candidate in patients with motor disability as a result of ischaemic stroke.

UK Oil and Gas Investments (UKOG), down 3.17% to 1.53p, has signed agreements with Celtique Energie and Magellan Petroleum to acquire 100% ownership of the 300 sq km Weald Basin licence PEDL234.

redT energy (RED), up 1.41% to 9p, said that two of its 5-40kWh energy storage systems have arrived at a customer's site in Johannesburg, South Africa. Bushveld Minerals (BMN), up 2.53% to 2.03p, energy subsidiary Bushveld Energy Company has signed a cooperation agreement with the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa.

Plexus (POS), up 0.94% to 67.88p, has agreed the terms of a conditional placing to raise £6m gross via the placing of 9.23m shares at 65p each. Proceeds would be applied across a number of the company's areas of activity to ensure it was well placed to take advantage when sector activity resumes.

Other stocks in the news included Gabelli Value Plus+ Trust (GVP), Taptica (TAP), Avacta (AVCT), Schroder REIT's (SREI), Stellar Diamonds (STEL), Faron Pharmaceuticals (FARN), Ten Alps (TAL), Global Telecom (GLTD), Mail.Ru (MAIL) and GVC Holdings (GVC).




Story provided by StockMarketWire.com