FTSE falls again, led by Coca-Cola HBC

Thu Aug 7, 2014 11:23am EDT

* FTSE 100 down 0.6 pct

* Coca-Cola HBC hurt by deterioration in Russian market

* Old Mutual, RSA post weak results but Aviva climbs

* BoE holds steady as rates debate heats up

By Tricia Wright

LONDON, Aug 7 (Reuters) - Britain's top shares slipped again on Thursday after sobering results among the insurers and from bottler Coca-Cola HBC.

RSA shed 3.2 percent in a choppy day of trading after it outlined the details of its turnaround plan.

Sami Taipalus, analyst at Berenberg, said that while RSA's balance sheet position has been strengthened considerably, its economic capital ratio and targeted cost savings were both lower than expected.

"Overall, we struggle to get overly positive about the contents of the release at this stage," Taipalus said in a note.

Old Mutual was also down, falling 1.7 percent after foreign exchange trends dampened a headline jump in profit, traders said.

But fellow insurer Aviva rose 2.7 percent, one of the top FTSE 100 gainers, after unveiling a 4 percent rise in first-half operating profit as its European and UK general insurance businesses built on a strong start to the year.

Back among fallers, Coca-Cola HBC, the world's No. 2 bottler of Coca-Cola drinks, sank 5 percent after warning that volumes would fall for the rest of the year, citing a "sudden deterioration" in Russia, its biggest market.

More broadly, investors were on edge over the potential impact of sanctions announced by Russia in retaliation for penalties introduced by the West over events in Ukraine.

The FTSE 100 was down 38.44 points, or 0.6 percent, at 6,597.72 points by 1508 GMT, meaning the index has fallen more than 3 percent since a peak seen at the end of July.

Some traders, however, felt the index had found a floor around current levels for now.

"They're (investors are) still a bit nervous... but in the short term it's fairly well priced in," Manoj Ladwa, head of trading at TJM Partners, said.

The Bank of England kept interest rates at their record low on Thursday, giving Britain's fast economic recovery more time to build even as differences among its policymakers become more apparent.

The European Central Bank also left interest rates unchanged. (Additional reporting by Alistair Smout; Editing by Ruth Pitchford)