StockMarketWire.com - UK stocks tumbled throughout Thursday after the Bank of England forecast a slower-than-expected rebound from the coronavirus pandemic.

It said the economic slump won't be as bad as first thought, but kept interest rates on hold at 0.1% as it warned a 'material' rise in unemployment this year will mean the recovery will take longer.

The UK's benchmark FTSE 100 index closed 1.27% lower to 6,026.94.

In company news, shares in Aviva gained 4.64% to 297.5p on news the insurer has resumed its dividend, although it said it would review its payout policy after first-half profit was dented by Covid-19 and weather related claims. For the six months ended 30 June, pre-tax profit fell 29% to £1.07bn.

ITV increased 3.94% to 63.3p despite the broadcaster reporting a sharp decline in profit in the first half of the year, with its production and advertising 'significantly' impacted by the pandemic.

Pre-tax profit plunged to £15m from £222m on-year as revenue fell 17% to £1.45bn in the first six months of 2020.

Packaging company Mondi rose 3.12% to £14.69 after it announced that 'softer pricing' prompted a decline in revenue for the first half of 2020 and lower underlying EBITDA. But the company said that its strong financial position had allowed it to resuming paying dividends.

Glencore plunged 8.08% to 180p after the mining giant swung to a loss of $2.6bn, compared with a profit of $226m a year earlier following the impact of the pandemic on commodity prices.

GlaxoSmithKline dipped 1.47% to £15.50 despite the pharmaceutical giant announcing that the US Food and Drug Administration had approved its drug used to treat blood cancer patients.

Insurance company Phoenix gained 2.58% to 708.2p after it reported 'strong' cash generation in the first half of 2020 due to new business and raised its 2020 cash generation target range following its acquisition of ReAssure in July.

Serco plunged 15.17% to 143.7p despite the outsourced services provider announcing that revenue grew by 24% to £1.8bn in the first half and profits also rose.

Its results were boosted by contract wins in 2019 and the acquisition of the Naval Systems Business Unit of Alion last August, while COVID-19 had 'little effect' on profits.

Mining company Evraz dipped 2.55% to 313.7p after it cut its interim dividend and reported operating profit fell 2.4% to $891m on-year as revenue was down 18.8% to $5bn in the six months to 30 June.


Story provided by StockMarketWire.com