- London's FTSE 100 ended Friday's session in the red as a resurgence of Covid-19 cases in Europe, a growing number of outbreaks in the UK and a warning from Michel Barnier that a UK-EU Brexit trade deal 'seems unlikely' weighed on sentiment.

These negatives overshadowed the UK's better than expected retail sales figures for July, while the FTSE may have fared worse but for a drop in sterling which favoured the overseas earners in the index.

At the close of play, the FTSE finished 11.45 points lower, or 0.19% down, at 6,001.89.


Budget airlines gained after the UK Government added Portugal to its list of travel corridors. EasyJet rose 3.5% to 573.8p with rival Ryanair improving 2.9% to €11.45, while tour operator TUI ticked up 4.8% to 308.2p.

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca shed 1.3% to £84.37, even as its drug to treat patients with extensive-stage small cell lung cancer gained approval in Japan.

Investment company HG Capital Trust climbed 8.8% to 272.5p on announcing that it would pour about £17.1m into Norwegian enterprise software company Visma.


Disease test-kit supplier Omega Diagnostics rose 1.7% to 59p, having received World Health Organisation pre-qualification for its Visitect CD4 test for HIV.

Logistics group Eddie Stobart jumped 6.6% to 8.1p on news that it had secured a three-year contract from supermarket group Morrisons (MRW) to provide transportation services from two distribution centres.

Alternative energy company Simec Atlantis Energy surged 49% higher to 26.5p after it agreed to source £170m of debt from South Korea's Hana Financial Investment.

The debt would fund the first phase of the company's Uskmouth project in Wales, which would convert a coal-fired power plant into one fed by waste-derived fuel pellets.

Engineering company 600 Group was unchanged at 8p, despite the welcome news its order book had begun to recover after lockdowns eased.

The company also secured a £1.2m loan backed by the UK government via HSBC to help it weather the pandemic.

Cleaning products group Tristel ticked up 4.2% to 495p after its Duo disinfectants were approved for the decontamination of semi-critical medical devices by authorities in India.

RNA therapeutics developer Silence Therapeutics skipped 3% higher to 475p on announcing that it had filed for a proposed listing of American depositary shares on the Nasdaq.

Oncology, inflammation and infectious diseases focused Tiziana Life Sciences ended 4.5% lower at 150p, having been granted a patent in the US related to its Milciclib treatment for cancer.

Superyacht maintenance company GYG gained 2.6% to 79.5p on guiding for higher core first-half earnings, as margin improvements through restructuring offset a fall in revenue.

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