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Europe: Britain's FTSE dips, miners weigh as Turkey crisis eases

[LONDON] UK shares ended the day down 0.4 per cent on Tuesday after a choppy session, weighed down notably by lower copper prices as fallout from the Turkish lira crisis that has rattled global markets since Friday eased.

The FTSE 100 closed down 0.4 per cent while the pan-European Stoxx 600 was flat.

Data showing wage growth in Britain had slowed even though unemployment fell to its lowest since 1975 had little impact on stocks.

"Despite the resilience of the data, the inability of wages to show any signs of pushing up from their current levels continues to act as a significant imponderable", wrote Michael Hewson from CMC Markets.

"This is likely to make the calculus around another rise in interest rates much more difficult."

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Shares in Antofagasta fell 7 per cent, the worst performer, after reporting first half core earnings down 16.2 per cent versus a year earlier.

The Chilean copper producer cited weaker ore quality and higher costs and said trade tensions clouded the broader market outlook. Goldman Sachs analysts called the numbers disappointing.

Also weighing, London copper fell after data showed the Chinese economy was cooling, suggesting demand from the world's top consumer of the metal could slow.

Other miners also traded in the red, including Fresnillo down 1.5 per cent while Rio Tinto and Glencore retreated 1.3 per cent and 0.8 per cent respectively.

Anglo-Australian mining giant BHP rose 0.5 per cent, however, after the union at its Escondida copper mine in Chile called off a strike planned to start on Tuesday.

Britain's Royal Mail fell 1.6 per cent after being fined 50 million pounds (S$88.2 million) for discriminating against Whistl, its only major competitor delivering letters.

Esure continued to rise towards the buyout price of 280 pence per share set in Bain Capital's 1.21 billion pound offer. The UK insurer was up 3.9 per cent at 227.8 pence.

"The fact that the offer was all-cash also pleased shareholders," commented Artjom Hatsaturjants from Accendo Markets. 


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