StockMarketWire.com - The FTSE 100 continued its downward spiral on Friday as investors were worried about the ongoing trade war amid the UK's looming exit from the EU, pushing the index 1.1% lower to 7,432.

Miners remained among the weakest performers with Glencore shedding 2.9% to 313.5p and Evraz slid 2.5% to 497.5p.

European equities were also under pressure as Germany's DAX was one of the biggest hit, down 1% at 12,364.

US President Donald Trump threatened to withdraw the country from the World Trade Organisation, leading to a subdued opening on Wall Street with the exception of the tech-heavy Nasdaq.

The Nasdaq rose 0.2% to 8,104 at 4:45pm UK time.

Brent crude oil dipped 0.5% to $77.37 per barrel and copper fell 1.5% to $2.65 per pound.

MID AND LARGE CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Whitbread jumped 14.3% to £45.96 after it agreed to sell its Costa coffee chain to Coca-Cola for £3.9bn and pledged to return 'a significant majority' of the proceeds to shareholders. The deal marked a change of tack for the Premier Hotel chain owner, which originally intended to offload Costa via a de-merger.

British software company Sage Group dropped 7.8% to 595.4p as the sudden resignation of chief executive Stephen Kelly sparked more concerns about the company's performance following a revenue downgrade in April.

Investment management firm Rathbone Brothers rose 4.4% to £26.34 following the completed acquisition of Speirs & Jeffrey after receiving approval from the Financial Conduct Authority.

Free-to-air broadcaster ITV dipped 0.8% to 160.6p as investment bank Morgan Stanley cut its recommendation on the shares from 'overweight' to 'equal-weight' and dropped its price target from 230p to 210p.

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca dropped 1.9% to £57.95 after its lupus treatment failed to meet its primary objectives in a trial.

Shire, meanwhile, completed the sale of its oncology franchise to Servier for $2.4bn. Its shares dipped 0.3% to £44.98.

Restaurant Group, which owns the Frankie & Benny's and Garfunkel's chains, rallied 5.2% to 289.6p after investors looked past a fall in first-half profit and focused on improving like-for-like sales since the end of June.

Vodafone fell 1.8% to 164.5p on a completed merger between its Indian unit and Idea Cellular.

John Laing Infrastructure Fund posted a surge in first-half profit and said a shareholder vote on a takeover of the company would occur next month. Its shares were steady at 145.8p.

SMALL CAP RISERS AND FALLERS

Midatech Pharma soared 15.8% to 30.1p on the back of several positive outcomes from a study testing the efficacy and safety of its treatment for carcinoid cancer and acromegaly.

Minoan Group gained 6.2% to 5.7p after it said it was closing in on a potential sale of its travel and leisure business Stewart Travel to its primary lender Zachary Asset Holdings.


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