FTSE 100 watch: Footsie subdued as trade tensions return

RSA and Aviva in demand with Allianz reportedly looking at large acquisition

FTSE 100 watch: Footsie subdued as trade tensions return

The UK benchmark index has fallen into the red in today’s session, with the trade tensions between the US and China weighing on investor sentiment. Shares in blue-chip insurers Aviva (LON:AV) and RSA Insurance (LON:RSA) have been in demand on the back of reports that Allianz is looking at a large acquisition.

FTSE 100 subdued on Monday

As of 12:03 BST, the Footsie had given up 25.23 points to stand 0.30 percent lower at 7,610.66. Investor sentiment has been subdued today after US President Donald Trump announced tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports on Friday, while China said that it will respond to the move with tariffs “of the same scale and strength” and that any previous trade deals with Trump were ‘invalid,’ Reuters reports.

Blue-chip risers & fallers

Aviva and RSA meanwhile have advanced following a report in The Sunday Times that Germany’s insurance giant Allianz was on the prowl for a large-scale acquisition, with a possible takeover approach for the two FTSE 100 companies among options being considered. Aviva’s share price is 1.63 percent up at 510.60p, while shares in RSA are changing hands 0.86 percent higher at 657.60p.

Marks & Spencer Group (LON:MKS) meanwhile is underperforming the broader UK market, having given up 1.94 percent to 297.60p so far today. The blue-chip retailer could abandon its womenswear brand Per Una as it continues with its transformation under chief executive Steve Rowe, who has been looking to turn around the group’s fortunes.

DS Smith (LON:SMDS) is 1.35 percent down at 556.20p, despite reporting a rise in full-year revenues and profits.

The FTSE 100 was 0.36 percent down at 7,606.53 points as of 12:41 BST on Monday, 18 June 2018.

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