- The FTSE 100 was still in the red despite US equities starting to recover from Thursday's sell-off on trade war fears.

An uplift in sterling against the dollar was bad news for UK blue-chips as approximately 70% of earnings generated by the FTSE 100 come from overseas.

The index closed 0.4% lower at 6,921.

Brent crude oil jumped 1.3% to $69.84 per barrel. Gold glittered at $1,343 per ounce and copper fell 1% to $2.98 per pound.


High street fashion retailer Next (NXT) was in the spotlight after results in the year to January met guidance provided in its Christmas trading update. Investors were relieved there was no profit warning or dividend cut, helping the shares strut 7.7% higher to £49.84.

Indivior (INDV) warned its best-selling opioid addiction therapy in the US could suffer a 'rapid and material loss of market share' if it fails to avert a ruling in favour of pharma firm Alvogen. Its shares crashed 19% when the market opened, but these losses narrowed and left the shares trading 6.2% lower.

In the same sector, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) received a 3.3% boost to £13.15 after dropping out of the bidding for Pfizer's Consumer Healthcare division. The pharma giant also revealed its shingles vaccine was approved in Europe and Japan.

Engineer Smiths (SMIN) reported a drop in first half sales and profit due to weakness in its businesses that target the energy and medical sectors, as well as unfavourable currency movements. The stock fell 4.4% to £14.68.


Butcher Crawshaw (CRAW) unveiled a challenging first six weeks in its financial year and the departure of chief executive officer Noel Collett and chief financial officer Alan Richardson. Its shares plummeted 30.3% to 3.9p.

Serabi Gold (SRB) announced private equity group Greenstone Resources agreed to invest $15m for a 29.82% stake in the company, triggering a 13.2% rally to 4.1p.

UK Oil & Gas Investments (UKOG) surged 16.7% to 1.4p on news that Surrey County Council discharged planning pre-conditions for further flow testing and drilling at its Horse Hill oil discovery.

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