February 28, 2020 / 8:18 AM / a month ago

London stocks hammered as pandemic fears intensify

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* FTSE 100 tumbles 3.2%, FTSE 250 sheds 2.5%

* Both indexes enter correction territory

* Miners, oil majors, airlines lead declines

Feb 28 (Reuters) - UK shares tanked on Friday, with both benchmark indexes firmly entering correction territory, as fears mounted that the coronavirus outbreak could turn into a pandemic and spark a global recession.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 fell 3.2% and was on track for its worst week since the 2008 financial crisis. The index has now lost about 13% since a recent peak on Feb. 12.

The mid-cap FTSE 250 tumbled 2.5%, also eyeing its biggest weekly decline since 2008, as the spread of the virus deepened in countries outside China and crippled supply chains.

Trade-reliant miners and oil majors shed 4% and 3.3%, respectively. The travel and leisure sector fell 4.1% to its lowest level since 2016, as drastic containment measures cut demand for air travel and hotels.

British Airways owner IAG tumbled 6.9% to its lowest level in over four months after the airline said it would cancel some flights to and from Italy, Singapore and South Korea. (Reporting by Sagarika Jaisinghani and Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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