UK Stocks Decline after a Favorable Last Week

After experiencing the biggest weekly gain this year in the last week, the UK stocks have declined. The benchmark index of UK, FTSE 100 went down by 32.42 points and is currently at 5786.72. The broader FTSE All-Share Index also dropped by 0.5%. The ISEQ Index of Ireland experienced a fall of 0.5% as well.

There is concern among the Euro zone countries already because of the Catalan election results. According to analysts, this is a headache for Mariano Rajoy, the Spanish Prime Minister; that he would love to do away with for the time being. It is expected that the calls for an independence referendum in Catalonia will increase and this chaos will most certainly not be favorable to the investors.

According to a recent report from The Institute of Fiscal Studies, Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne may decide to extend the austerity program of UK till 2018.To overcome the structural deficit of the country, it is important to spend cuts and increase taxes, as mentioned in the report. Incidentally, Osborne named Mark Carney as the next Governor in line for the Bank of England. Carney is going to replace Mervyn King, who will step down from his post in June, 2013.

Coming back to the UK stock market, Barclays Plc. experienced the biggest drop in the FTSE 100 Index today (Of 5.4%). Qatar Holding LLC sold the last of its warrants that the company acquired during the 2008 financial crisis. Cranswick Plc., on the other hand, showed the biggest jump in the last 4 years as its first-half results were good enough. The first half pretax profit of the company is of 22.5 million pounds and it is expected that the margins will increase further in the next half of the year. The per share price of Cranswick is currently at 812.5 pence.

The full year profit of SDL Plc. may miss the initial forecast of $4.8 million according to initial reports and as a result, the share prices plunged by 14%. However, after its acquisition of the Stanlow oil refinery, Essar Energy Plc. surged ahead by 4.9%. The current price per share is 127 pence as the 1st half profit of the company increased by 97% from that of 2011. On the other hand, Randgold Resources and Antofagasta Plc. experience slid of 1.7% and 1.2% respectively.