Tate drags as FTSE 100 loses steam post Fed

Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:56am EDT

* FTSE down 28.96 points at 6,596.43

* Tate & Lyle falls as CS cuts earnings and rating

* Goldminers dip as Fed stimulus decision wears off

* BP climbs on re-heated Exxon Mobile bid talk

By David Brett

LONDON, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Britain's top shares fell on Friday, with Tate & Lyle falling on short-term earnings worries and the broader index flagging after the previous session's big rise.

Traders attributed Tate & Lyle's 2.2 percent fall to a note from Credit Suisse cutting the sweetner-maker to "neutral" from "outperform", citing short-term hurdles.

Credit Suisse lowered its target price to 800 pence from 930 pence, and cut its earning per share (EPS) estimates by up to 8 percent.

For the full year, Tate is expected to post EPS of 60.1 pence, with revenues estimated to be around 3.5 billion pounds ($5.6 billion), according to Thomson Reuters forecasts. Tate trades on a forward 12-month price-to-earnings ratio of 12.7 times, compared with peers on 18 times, according to Thomson Reuters data.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 index was down 28.96 points, or 0.4 percent, at 6,596.43 points, having rallied 1 percent on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve's move to delay cuts to economic stimulus.

Steen Jakobsen, chief economist at Saxo Bank, said while stocks would enjoy an initial pick-up thanks to the Fed's delay in winding down its liquidity scheme, the longer-term effects would reduce the future expected return on equities.

"First equities will be higher because of lower rates for longer, but when the liquidity drug wears off you will have the reality of lower world growth, lower marginal pricing power and most likely a switch back into fixed income from equity," he said.

Goldminers slid having risen sharply in the previous session in tandem with gold, which is an inflation hedge in times of easy monetary stimulus. Randgold and Fresnillo were among the top fallers, each down around 3.4 percent.

Loose monetary polices across the globe have hit yields on bonds and driven investors to seek better returns from stock markets, with the FTSE 100 up 12 percent since the start of 2013.

However, Psigma Investment Management's Tim Gregory noted the underlying doubt over economic recovery that underpinned the Fed's decision.

"When the dust settles on the outcome of the Fed meeting, perhaps investors will not feel quite so exuberant about equity markets," said Gregory, who heads Psigma Investment Management's global equities team

BP, the UK's 6th largest company by market capitalisation, rose 0.4 percent, adding 1.4 points to the FTSE 100, with traders citing renewed talk that U.S. energy giant Exxon Mobil could be about to bid for the UK-listed firm.

Bid talk has consistently circled BP since its oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. It still trades around 30 percent below its level prior to the spill.

Britain's No. 3 grocer J Sainsbury climbed 1.3 percent with traders citing Citigroup's upgrade of the firm to "neutral" from "sell" before its second-quarter trading update due on Oct. 2.

Sainsbury's shares have risen 9 percent in the last 90 days while earnings per share estimates for the full-year have risen by an average of 0.5 percent over the same period, according to Starmine data.

Societe Generale's upgrade of GKN to "buy" from "hold" helped the car and plane parts maker gain 1.4 percent. (Reporting by David Brett; Editing by Toby Chopra)

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