- UK stocks opened lower on Friday, following Asian exchanges into the red, after Chinese state media reported that the country could discontinue trade talks with the US.

At 0848, the FTSE 100 was down 19.88 points, or 0.3%, at 7.333.63.

EasyJet gained 2.8% despite delivering a wider first-half loss, as it more-or-less stuck to its annual guidance amid a challenging time for travel companies.

Software company Sage fell 3.3% as it booked a slight fall in first-half adjusted earnings, after rising sales were offset by weaker margins.

Restaurant Group gained 1.9% after its revenue jumped 57% in the year to date, owing to its recent acquisition of Wagamama, new site openings and a 2.8% improvement in like-for-like sales.

Metro Bank jumped 21% after it raised £375m from a discounted placing of its shares, exceeding its £350m target and helping to cool concerns about the challenger bank's financial health.

Investment firm IntegraFin fell 1.8%, despite it declaring a maiden interim dividend as its first-half profits grew by nearly a fifth.

Cairn Energy shed 0.7% on reiterating its annual production guidance.

Recruitment and training company Staffline tumbled 49% as it warned on profits, blaming Brexit uncertainty and the delayed release of its annual results for hurting demand.

Online marketing minnow for the gambling sector Veltyco dropped 36% after it warned of a first-half loss.

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