London pre-open: Stocks seen lower after more heavy losses in US, Asia
Stocks in London were set to drop at the open on Friday after another selloff on Wall Street and in Asia, as investors eyed a slew of key data releases.
The FTSE 100 was called to open 56 points lower at 7,124.
CMC Markets analyst Michael Hewson said: "It would appear that the brief respite for stocks seen in the middle of the week turned out to be the eye of the storm as once again rising bond yields prompted a further bout of selling across the board, not only in the US last night but in Asia again this morning.
"Concerns about rising interest rates weren’t helped by an unexpectedly hawkish inflation report from the Bank of England yesterday, while the latest Chinese trade data suggested that the Chinese economy appeared to be ticking along nicely, even if the trade surplus did shrink quite sharply as a result of a big jump in imports.
"US weekly jobless claims also dropped sharply to 221k, once again reinforcing the tightness of the US labour market which in turn could well put further upward pressure on wages in the months ahead."
UK industrial and manufacturing production figures for December are out at 0930 GMT, along with trade balance data.
In corporate news, British Land announced that it has acquired the Woolwich Estate, covering 4.9 acres in south east London, for a headline price £103m - representing a net initial yield of 4.1%. The FTSE 100 company said the acquisition sat in line with its strategy of focussing on well-connected, mixed use assets which were meeting the “evolving needs” of occupiers and their customers.
It explained that the acquisition built on its portfolio of places benefitting from the upcoming Elizabeth Line railway, including Broadgate, Paddington Central and Ealing Broadway, and provided significant potential to drive growth and returns through British Land’s placemaking, asset management and development expertise.
Plastics manufacturer Victrex reported a very strong start to the year, with industrial sales led by consumer electronics to offset slightly weaker performance from medical customers.
First quarter revenue of £78.7m was up 41% on the prior year as sales volumes increased 30% to 1,051 tonnes, though the comparative period was quite weak.