Belfast Telegraph

FTSE 100's record streak of closing highs comes to an end amid Brexit jitters

The FTSE 100 ended its longest record closing streak in history on Monday, while the pound failed to recover from three-month lows.

London's blue chip index closed lower by 0.15% at 7,327.13, weighed down by banking and energy stocks on the back of Brexit jitters and oil supply worries.

It is the FTSE 100's first negative close since the end of December and puts an end to a historic winning streak after finishing at a record high for 12 trading sessions in a row.

Meanwhile, Brexit concerns were taking a bite out of the pound.

Sterling was down over 1% against the US dollar at 1.204 after dipping to its lowest level since the October "flash crash" at 1.198 late Sunday evening.

The pound was down nearly 0.9% against the euro at 1.135 after falling as low as 1.130 on Sunday.

It comes as Prime Minister Theresa May prepares to set out her approach to the forthcoming Brexit negotiations in a major speech at London's Lancaster House on Tuesday.

She has been accused by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn of preparing to trigger a full-scale "trade war" with the European Union amid reports she is ready to pull Britain out of the single market.

Connor Campbell, a financial analyst at SpreadEx, said that Brexit fears were spilling over into the FTSE 100.

He said that a "smattering of red in its banking sector was assumedly brought about by the stocks being disgruntled at the prospect of the UK leaving the single market."

Royal Bank of Scotland fell 6.2p to 214.9p, Lloyds Banking Group fell 1.35p to 64.69p, and Barclays dropped 4.15p to 231.1p.

In oil markets, Brent crude prices fell 0.3% to 55.35 US dollars per barrel (£45.95) as investors weighed the effectiveness of supply cut pledges by Opec members and other major producers like Russia.

It sent BP shares down 5.4p to 512.6p and Royal Dutch Shell's 'B' shares lower by 6.5p to 2,371p.

Across Europe, the French Cac 40 and German Dax were down by around 0.8% and 0.6%, respectively

US stock markets were closed on Monday for Martin Luther King Day.

In UK stocks, Burberry shares rose 26p to 1,637p after the luxury retailer confirmed new boss Marco Gobbetti would officially join the company as an executive chairman on January 27, and take his role as chief executive after July 5.

Away from the top tier, Goals Soccer Centres shares fell 1.5p to 105.5p as broker N+1 Singer cut its target price for the stock from 150p to 140p, despite reporting 1.3% rise in annual sales to £33.4 million.

The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were Rio Tinto up 70.5p to 3,488p, Anglo American up 26p to 1,355.5p, Mediclinic International up 14p to 806p, and Randgold Resources up 110p at 6,820p.

The biggest fallers on the FTSE 100 were Royal Bank of Scotland down 6.2p to 214.9p, Prudential down 34.5p at 1,578p, Dixons Carphone down 7.4p to 343.5p, and ITV down 4.4p to 204.2p.