FTSE 100 index closes down as concerns over China cause mining stocks to fall

James Nickerson
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London Stock Exchange Closes In The Red
The FTSE slipped below 6,100 points (Source: Getty)

The FTSE 100 index closed down today, dragged lower by mining stocks as concerns over China continued.

The index closed 1.04 per cent down at 6,073 points, despite strong gains made by BAE Systems.

"BAE topped the FTSE 100, as investors sought out defence stocks after North Korea’s nuclear weapon test," said Jasper Lawler, an analyst at CMC Markets.

BAE's share price closed 3.74 per cent up at 512.5p per share on the news.

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However, as the People's Bank of China set a weaker midpoint for the yuan and a private survey showed Chinese service sector activity having expanded at its slowest rate in 17 months in December, mining stocks took a hit.

BHP fell 4.91 per cent to 709.4p, while Rio Tinto and Antofagasta were 4.8 per cent down to 1,846.5p and 2.95 per cent down to 433.7p respectively. Glencore fell 2.73 per cent to 85.85p and Anglo American fell to 270.4p per share, a 4.52 per cent decline.

"We are in a new world. China's not growing [in] double digits, demand for raw materials has fallen through the floor and it's both a supply and demand side problem," head of research at Accendo Markets Mike van Dulken said.

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Chip-maker ARM Holdings was also trading lower, falling 2.99 per cent ot 974p per share after Nikkei reported that Apple is anticipated to cut production of its iPhone 6S and 6S plus models by almost a third in the first quarter.

And companies with large operations in Asia continued to lose ground. Aberdeen Asset Management fell 1.89 per cent to 270p, while Standard Chartered was 3.14 per cent lower at 515.6p and Burberry dropped 2.05 per cent to 1,098p.

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