- Housebuilders failed to keep the blue chip index stable, as indicators suggest Brexit fears continue to be downplayed as house prices and consumer confidence improved.

The FTSE 100 declined 0.2% to 6,805.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil dropped 0.7% to $46 and Brent crude oil retreated 0.9% to $47.92 per barrel, respectively.

Gold nudged higher to $1,313 per ounce and copper gained 0.3% to $4,585 per tonne.

House prices rose by 0.6% in August, pushing average prices up to £206,145, while the GfK Consumer Confidence Index showed improved confidence from -12 in July to -7.

These two data points had positive read-across to shares in housebuilders including Berkeley (BKG), Bovis Homes (BVS) and Bellway (BWY).


Builders' merchant Grafton (GFTU) concerned investors as its net debt nearly doubled in the six months to 30 June, year-on-year, and the UK operations struggled. Shares were down 9.1% to 552.5p as half year results came in below expectations.

Online gambling company 888 (888) reported a 39% increase in half year pre-tax profit to $27.8 million due to an influx of active players during the second quarter of 2016.


Mobile advertising platform Taptica (TAP) nearly doubled gross profit to $17.8 million and declared a special dividend, causing shares to shoot up 27%.

Carclo (CAR) dropped 12.4% to 137.5p after warning that lower UK corporate bond yields could result in a significant increase in its pension deficit, preventing it from paying a dividend declared in June.

Investors raised a glass to Punch Taverns (PUB) after the average profit per pub across its entire estate rose by approximately 4%, with its retail division operating ahead of expectations and plans to accelerate expansion.

New Trend Lifestyle (NTLG) plummeted 37.1% after raising £300,000 through a share placing priced at more than half of yesterday's closing price.

Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) fell by 24.2% following an open offer to raise $25 million, which allowed investors to buy shares at a considerable discount.

Gulf Marine Services (GMS) propelled 6.8% higher as profits rose by a fifth to $41.9 million. Despite tough conditions in the oil, gas and renewable energy sectors, it maintained full-year EBITDA guidance of $100-$110 million.

Pensions consolidator Chesnara (CSN) nudged 1.1% higher to 333.5p after stating it could deliver good cash generation post-Brexit.

Investors checked out of hotel business PPHE (PPH) following weaker trading in the UK and flat like-for-like sales, sending shares down 7.4% to 747.5p. Stockbroker FinnCap downgraded its earnings forecasts to reflect a more cautious view.

Copper miner Weatherly International (WTI) surged 14.3% to 0.4p after striking a deal to delay a loan repayment with financier Orion.

Gym Group (GYM) lost some of its gains from yesterday's 13% rally after rubbishing press reports that it would buy 70 gyms from Fitness First.

HSS Hire (HSS) disappointed investors despite reducing its loss before tax and increasing its sales, as the market expected better results from the struggling company.

Ceramics maker Churchill China (CHH) was in positive territory after pre-tax profit surged by nearly a third and the dividend was lifted by 12.5% to 6.3p per share.

Australia-focused gold producer Keras Resources (KRS) announced a toll milling deal with Golden Mile Milling to treat gold-rich ore.

Story provided by