London’s top indexes plunged yesterday as investors were spooked by an apparent escalation in Russia-Ukraine tensions.
The capital’s premier FTSE 100 index lost 0.39 per cent to dip to 7,484.33 points, while the domestically-focused FTSE 250 index, which is more aligned with the health of the UK economy, dropped 1.24 per cent to 21,097.19 points.
Reports of crossfire on the Russia-Ukraine border emerged yesterday, with Moscow claiming to have killed five Ukrainian soldiers, spooking investors.
The seeming ramping up in tensions cut through any gains sparked by the announcement of a planned summit with American President Joe Biden and Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
London-based miners which could be exposed to harsh economic sanctions if Moscow invades Ukraine were the worst performers on the FTSE 100.
Evraz and Polymetal International, both of which have operations in either Russia or Ukraine, were the two worst performers on the City’s top index, dropping 5.72 per cent and 8.47 per cent respectively.
Petropavlovsk, which also has operations in Russia, plunged more than 17 per cent.
Banks were among the best performers on the FTSE 100, with state-owned NatWest topping the column of biggest risers during the morning session before giving up some gains.
HSBC edged 0.44 per cent higher.
The pound gained ground on the greenback, strengthening 0.14 per cent to buy $1.3609.
European markets plunged yesterday, with Germany’s Dax 30 and France’s Cac 40 down more than two per cent.