- Global equities remained in the red as investors fretted over several risks, including US President Donald Trump's criticism over the latest interest rate hike on Wednesday.

Other concerns that weighed on sentiment include high valuations and the impact of the trade war between the US and China.

The FTSE 100 reversed 1.9% to 7,006 and Germany's DAX fell 1.3% to 11,557.

On Wall Street, which endured big falls overnight, the Dow Jones slipped a further 1.1% to 25,317 around 4:45pm UK time.


Housebuilder Countryside Properties fell 10.8% to 282.2p as investors focused on a 7% decrease in private average selling prices to £402,000 between 1 October 2017 and 30 September.

Bookseller WH Smith announced it is planning to close six high street shops, wind down non-core trial initiatives such as Cardmarket and WHSmith Local and restructure operational activities. Shares in WHSmith slumped 11.5% to £18.

Homewares retailer Dunelm benefitted from rapid online growth after delivering a 4.2% rise in like-for-like sales in its first quarter, helping the stock strengthen 5.3% to 571.5p.

Packaging specialist Mondi delivered a 30% jump in third quarter earnings to €466m and reassured investors its input cost pressure is manageable. The shares were broadly unmoved at £17.75.

Geotechnical contractor Keller crashed 31.2% to 662p as it revealed losses in its Asian operations linked to deteriorating economic conditions and reassessment of project performance in two business units.

Recruiter Hays suffered a 11% fall to 156.7p on a slower quarterly growth rate in fees from placing employees due to the stronger sterling against the euro and Australian dollar.


In another shocking update, Patisserie Valerie owner Patisserie announced it will need an 'immediate injection of capital' to continue trading. Shares in the company remained suspended.

Fashion retailer N Brown slashed its dividend by 50% to 2.8p after a 5% decline in pre-tax profits in its first half, causing the stock to plummet 19.8% to 111p.

Over half of Chariot Oil and Gas's market value was wiped off after reporting the Prospect S well offshore Namibia had no hydrocarbon accumulations.

Publisher of the i newspaper Johnston Press put itself up for sale after a strategic review of its financial options. The stock reversed 5.5% to 3.07p.

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