* FTSE 100 edges down 0.2 pct
* Mining stocks hit by fall in iron ore prices
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, Aug 28 Britain's top equity index edged
down on Thursday from its highest closing level in nearly two
months, as a fall in the shares of top mining companies weighed
on the stock market.
The blue-chip FTSE 100 index, which on Wednesday had
risen to its highest closing level since early July, retreated
by 0.2 percent, or 10.15 points, to 6,820.51 points in early
The FTSE 350 Mining Index fell 1.2 percent,
with miner Rio Tinto weakening by 2.5 percent as the
sector was hit by a drop in iron ore prices in China, which is
the world's biggest metals consumer.
The FTSE has risen by more than 4 percent over the past
2-1/2 weeks, boosted by speculation of new stimulus measures
from the European Central Bank to boost the euro zone's
The index hit a peak this year at 6,894.88 points in
mid-May, which marked its highest level since December 1999.
However, it has not yet got past the 6,900 point level -
seen as a key hurdle to breach before the FTSE can then
challenge record highs at the 7,000 point area.
Kyri Kangellaris, managing director at Strand Capital, said
he would look to "short" the FTSE at current levels - namely
take bets on a pull-back.
"I think it's a pretty good shorting opportunity at these
levels," he said.
Adrian Slack, technical strategist at Novum Securities, was
more confident, saying any pull-back on the FTSE should be
"I think we're just pausing for breath before we go higher
at the end of the year. The downside looks pretty limited," said
(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Toby Chopra)