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22 Jan 2021 | 15:31

FTSE 100 movers: Next under pressure; dollar-earners gain

(Sharecast News) - London's FTSE 100 was down 0.5% at 6,685.26 in afternoon trade on Friday. Clothing retailer Next was under the cosh after saying it has dropped out of the running to bid for Arcadia's Topshop over price.

The company said in a statement: "Next plc announces that it has withdrawn from the process to acquire any, or all, of the Arcadia Group from the administrator, as our consortium has been unable to meet the price expectations of the vendor."

It also confirmed that it had been bidding as part of a joint venture with US investment firm Davidson Kempner.

Travel and leisure stocks were weaker amid worries about a prolonged lockdown and following reports the EU is considering creating new "dark red zones" which would be subject to tight travel restrictions. Europeans have also been "strongly discouraged" from all but essential travel within the EU amid rising Covid infections.

British Airways and Iberia parent IAG, GKN owner Melrose, Premier Inn owner Whitbread and InterContinental Hotels were all trading lower.

Dollar earners Ashtead, AstraZeneca and Imperial Brands were all in the black as sterling slumped against the greenback following disappointing UK retail sales and business activity data, and after rallying on Thursday.

FTSE 100 - Risers

Relx plc (REL) 1,874.50p 3.02% Ashtead Group (AHT) 3,864.00p 2.77% SSE (SSE) 1,548.00p 2.62% Smith & Nephew (SN.) 1,657.50p 2.03% AstraZeneca (AZN) 7,760.00p 1.44% B&M European Value Retail S.A. (DI) (BME) 520.40p 1.21% Imperial Brands (IMB) 1,659.50p 1.19% SEGRO (SGRO) 971.00p 1.17% GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) 1,378.60p 1.01% Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW) 186.80p 0.92%

FTSE 100 - Fallers

Next (NXT) 7,888.00p -3.31% International Consolidated Airlines Group SA (CDI) (IAG) 151.80p -3.28% Associated British Foods (ABF) 2,247.00p -3.10% Melrose Industries (MRO) 176.15p -2.44% Standard Chartered (STAN) 461.30p -2.16% Informa (INF) 518.60p -2.15% Antofagasta (ANTO) 1,506.50p -2.14% Whitbread (WTB) 3,113.00p -2.14% InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) 4,725.00p -2.07% Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) 34.61p -2.00%

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