StockMarketWire.com - Having started the day in the black the FTSE 100 closed down more than 1% and falling below the 6,300 mark.

In doing so it took its cue from the US where the S&P 500 was down 0.9% to 3,604.30 by 4.30pm UK time.

But the FTSE still marked one of its best monthly performances in November, buoyed by greater political certainty in the US and vaccine breakthroughs.

Strength in sterling on hopes of a Brexit deal also contributed to weakness in the index as it hit the relative value of its dominant overseas earnings.

Oil price volatility around the current OPEC meeting and a broker downgrade saw shares in BP fall 3.9% to 252.65p. Elsewhere the fate of retail group Arcadia hung in the balance as it rejected a £50 million loan offer from Mike Ashley's Frasers Group.

Banking group Lloyds fell 3.5% to 36p following news that it had appointed Charlie Nunn, a senior leader at rival HSBC, as its new chief executive.

Nunn is currently CEO of wealth and personal banking at HSBC. He will replace Antonio Horta-Osorio some time next year, with the exact timing subject to his notice period at HSBC.

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca climbed 1.4% to £78.78 after its diabetes drug Forxiga was approved in Japan to treat patients with chronic heart failure.

Fellow drug company Indivior jumped 2% to 101.7p, paring earlier larger gains, as it said it would 'vigorously defend' itself against a £1 billion claim brought by former parent Reckitt Benckiser over an opiod addiction treatment.

Indivior claimed the legal action was 'without merit' and that it had 'strong grounds' for defence.

Elsewhere, advertising behemoth WPP lost 3% to 726.8p after it submitted a proposal to acquire the shares in Australia and New Zealand operations that it didn't already own for around A$181 million (£100 million).

Consumer goods giant Unilever was flat at £45.85 on announcing that it had completed the unification of its British and Dutch businesses into a single UK-based parent company.

Security company GFS slipped 2.6% to 222.1p after potential suitor GardaWorld extended the deadline for shareholders to accept its 190p a share takeover offer to 16 December.

Russia-focused gold miner Petropavlovsk fell 0.7% to 27p, having announced the appointment of Denis Alexandrov as its chief executive.

Alexandrov was previously CEO of rival Russian producer Highland Gold Mining.

Fellow resources group Hochschild Mining firmed 0.6% to 214p as it maintained its annual output guidance, despite halting operations at its San Jose mine in Argentina after a surge in Covid-19 infections prompted lockdowns.

Subject to permission from the authorities, Hochschild said it was expecting to restart limited operations on 4 December.

Pet products and veterinary group Pets at Home fell 0.8% to 420.4p on news that it had acquired veterinary telemedicine company The Vet Connection for £15 million.

Disease test kit supplier Omega Diagnostics gained 6.7% to 49.6p, even as it posted a first-half loss after the pandemic hurt sales at its food intolerance division.

Omega Diagnostics, however, said it expected to post a significantly improved performance in the second half.


Story provided by StockMarketWire.com