Travel stocks lead London markets lower as investors digest Plan B damage
Travel stocks led London markets lower yesterday as investors took flight from the sector after the UK government launched tougher Covid-19 restrictions this week.
The capital’s premier FTSE 100 index dipped 0.22 per cent to close at 7,321.26 points, reversing some of this week’s gains.
The mid-cap FTSE 250, which is more aligned to the health of the UK economy, lost 0.35 per cent to finish at 23,148.04 points.
Travel and leisure stocks weighed down London markets as the outlook for the sector was clouded by the government enacting its Plan B measures to curb the spread of Omicron.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson reinstated work from home guidance, expanded mask wearing to a wider pool of venues and introduced vaccine passports on Wednesday.
The announcement hit airlines, with British Airways owner IAG plunging more than three per cent. Short haul airlines easyJet and Wizz Air both fell more than 2.40 per cent.
Aerospace engineer Rolls Royce was the worst performer on the FTSE 100, having 3.37 per cent shaved off its share price.
The travel sector’s losses bled into leisure stocks. Premier Inn owner Whitbread dipped 0.23 per cent and InterContinental Hotels Group fell 1.62 per cent.
London’s poor performance extended into the continent. Germany’s Dax 30 fell 0.30 per cent, while the pan-European Stoxx 600 edged down 0.09 per cent.
The pound was broadly flat against the greenback.