LONDON (Reuters) - Britain’s top share index began the week on a subdued note on Monday, with a Barclays-led drop in financials outweighing a buoyant commodities sector.
The blue-chip FTSE 100 .FTSE index ended flat at 7,562,28 points, having closed at a record high in the previous session.
A quiet day for earnings allowed investors to reflect on some of the updates issued so far in the third-quarter results season.
Barclays (BARC.L) fell 0.7 percent after broker Deutsche Bank cuts its target price on the stock, describing Barclays’ results as disappointing.
“Though the IB (investment banking) revenue environment remains challenging, we think the market is being overly bearish on the outlook,” Deutsche Bank analysts said in a note, retaining their “buy” rating on the stock.
However a rise in commodity stocks cushioned broader losses.
“I would put most of this move amongst the miners today (down) to partly the dollar and also a bit of a correction upwards after a few weeks of trading lower,” said City Index market analyst Ken Odeluga.
Among oil stocks, Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) gained 0.95 percent for a record close.
Health stocks were also among top gainers as ConvaTec (CTEC.L) jumped 3.8 percent after UBS analysts upgraded the company to “buy”, saying its shares were pricing in an “overly bearish scenario”.
NMC Health (NMC.L) also rose 2.5 percent.
Shares in the health stock fell by 5.2 percent after a U.S. court confirmed that the company needs to pay damages of $55.8 million to Wellstat in a drug distribution dispute.
Mitie Group (MTO.L) rose 1.5 percent after a double upgrade from broker Jefferies.
“The September profit warning provided a welcome reminder that Mitie’s path to rehabilitation will not be smooth,” Jefferies said in a note.
“The shares trade close to 15-year relative lows and selling Property Management would help to de-risk the balance sheet.”
Reporting by Kit Rees and Danilo Masoni; Editing by Toby Chopra and David Goodman