StockMarketWire.com - European equities were under pressure following the latest threat from US President Donald Trump to enforce more tariffs on Chinese goods.

The FTSE 100 slumped 1.2% to 7,652 with lower losses throughout Europe as the DAX slipped 0.5% lower to 12,738.

Among the biggest fallers were miners. BHP Billiton retreated 3% to £17.02 and Glencore lost 3.1% to 324p.

Miner Rio Tinto revealed stronger first half profits and hiked its dividend, but trade wars concerns overshadowed the robust performance as the shares reversed 3.4% to £40.54.

Brent crude oil was down 2% at $72.73 per barrel and copper cheapened 2.6% to $2.75 per pound.

In the US, investor sentiment was stronger thanks to robust earnings at Apple, alleviating concerns over the tech sector. The tech-heavy Nasdaq enjoyed the most gains, up 0.3% at 7,695 around 4:45pm UK time.

MID AND LARGE CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

High street bank Lloyds beat profit expectations and boosted its guidance despite putting aside compensation money for mis-selling private protection insurance, helping the stock gain 1.6% to 63.4p.

BBA Aviation slumped 11.4% to 310p on declining operating margins from 20% to 17.7% in the half year to June.

A hot summer was bad news for fashion retailer Next, which fell 7.1% to £55.12, on disappointing quarterly sales figures.

Engineer Aggreko rallied 9.2% to 812p on a robust set of first half results as sales and profitability both rose.

Shares in outsourcer Capita went 8.6% in the other direction to 148p following a drop in sales and profitability in the first half of 2018.

Funeral provider Dignity beat first half profit expectations following a higher death rate, pushing the stock 3.8% higher to £10.51.

Higher sales volumes and price increases boost first half profit at packaging business Smurfit Kappa, helping the shares advance 2.7% to £32.16.

Insurer Direct Line struggled on a drop in gross written premiums and rising combined ratio, implying lower profitability and hit the stock 1.6% to 338.5p.

Man Group added 6.3% to 184.4p on an increase in funds under management to $113.7bn.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Filtronic rallied 27.4% to 12.8p after winning a new contract worth $2m from a major European original equipment manufacturer.


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