Markets fall as traders react to latest sanctions against Russia

The FTSE 100 leading share index closed the day down 31.21 points, or 0.42%, at 7458.25

Simon Neville
Monday 28 February 2022 17:22
Markets closed down as investors reacted to new Russian sanctions. (Aaron Chown / PA)
Markets closed down as investors reacted to new Russian sanctions. (Aaron Chown / PA)

Markets took a hit at the start of the week as Western leaders announced a range of new sanctions against Russia.

The FTSE 100 leading share index closed the day down 31.21 points, or 0.42%, at 7458.25 as traders contended with the wide-ranging impact economic sanctions could have on the global economy.

Oil prices rose during the day, but fell from recent peaks.

As markets closed, a barrel of oil cost 100.45 dollars – up 2.57% on the day.

In France and Germany, stock markets had similar falls to London, with the former down 1.39% and the latter closing down 0.73%.

A pound was worth 1.342 dollars and 1.196 euros – flat on the day against both currencies as governments in the US, EU and UK tried to move in unison with sanctions.

Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at online trading platform IG, said: “Markets have shrugged off some of the events of the weekend, holding up better than many had feared given the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

“While still down from Friday’s close, equity markets have been steadily closing the gaps down many suffered as trading got underway this morning.

“The lack of any obvious progress in the Russia-Ukraine ceasefire talks has not provoked any further selling, and for now the lows of the day are intact.

“Even Russian threats of escalation do not, as yet, appear to be having much of an impact.

“Overall, the initial shock of conflict has worn off, and aside from the huge impact on Russian stocks and the rouble the atmosphere is far less febrile than it was last week.”

Russian-facing shares on the FTSE 100 fared the worst on Monday, with Evraz closing down 29% and Polymetal losing 56%.

In company news, the feared sell-off of BP shares after the oil giant said it would divest its 20% stake in Russian producer Rosneft left shares down 3.95% – although they remain up on where they started at the beginning of the year.

Elsewhere, miner Ferrexpo, which operates in Ukraine, said it will delay publication of its annual results due to the invasion, as it assesses the impact of the conflict on the business.

Shares closed up 16p, or 10%, at 169p.

Exhibitions giant Hyve Group said it has postponed events in Ukraine and expects disruption for events expected to be held in Russia. Shares dropped 20.7p, or 23%, to 68p.

And away from the Russian conflict, Primark owner Associated British Foods (ABF) said sale at the fashion stores rebounded as Covid-19 restrictions eased, meaning sales and profits are strongly ahead of last year.

Sales at Primark are set to jump 60% for the 24 weeks to March 5, including strong growth in the UK. Shares closed down 39.5p at 1,920p.

Sticking with the high street, convenience store operator McColl’s said it was in talks to secure cash needed to stop it from collapsing.

Shares closed down 4.65p, or 66%, at 2.35p, valuing the entire business at just £6.6 million.

The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were BAE Systems up 66.6p at 719.6p; Bunzl up 209p at 2,969p; Hikma up 136p at 2,083p; Barratt up 36.2p at 611p and Antofagasta up 3.5p at 1,521p.

The biggest fallers were Polymetal down 447.2p at 251.2p; Evraz down 59.95p at 144.75p; Mondi down 215p at 1,571.5p; Coca Cola HBC down 232p at 1,904p and Standard Chartered down 26.8p at 532.8p.

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