FTSE 100 falls off record highs to end the week

Emma Haslett
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Shares wobbled in late afternoon trading, but remained higher (Source: Getty)

The UK's bluechip index fell off a record high in late afternoon trading, but nevertheless ended the week almost 100 points up.

The FTSE 100 finished at 7,423.6 points, 0.1 per cent higher. Both risers and fallers were a mixed bag, with insurer Admiral Group leading the way, rising 1.8 per cent to 1,941p, followed by healthcare technology giant Convatec, which rose 1.6 per cent to 260p, and EasyJet, which rose 1.6 per cent to 1,020p.

At the other end was wealth manager Old Mutual, which fell 2.3 per cent to 221.5p, Marks & Spencer, which fell 1.7 per cent to 328.7p, and Standard Charatered, which dropped 1.5 per cent to 730.5p.

The pound was similarly flat, edging up 0.2 per cent to $1.2383 against the dollar - although it was on stronger footing against the euro, rising 0.4 per cent to €1.1529.

The slowdown was seen as a "pause for breath" for the markets after the excitement of the Federal Reserve's interest rate hike earlier this week.

"The focus [is] shifting away from the Fed towards the French elections, which are moving upon us at speed," said Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG.

"Equities remain buoyant, even if they have failed to move much higher in the two days since the Fed meeting. Gold prices continue to advance as the dollar remains under pressure, with the parallels to 2016’s price action remarkably similar.

"Brexit, Scoxit, the French elections and inflation uncertainty all make a convincing case for why gold will go higher, but there is still much work to be done to restart the failed bull move we saw last year."

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