U.K. stocks declined after the biggest four-day rally for the benchmark FTSE 100 Index in more than three months.
BAE Systems Plc, Europe’s biggest defense company, and Legal & General Group Plc, the largest manager of U.K. pension assets, both lost at least 2.3 percent as JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded the shares. Johnson Matthey Plc climbed 3 percent after UBS AG recommended investors buy the stock.
The FTSE 100 fell 22.03, or 0.3 percent, to 6,394.11 at 8:31 a.m. in London, paring the gauge’s rally this week to 2.3 percent. The broader FTSE All-Share Index slid 0.4 percent while Ireland’s ISEQ Index was little changed.
U.K. stocks yesterday posted their biggest four-day gain since early January as a report showed American unemployment claims fell more than forecast. Data due at 8:30 a.m. in Washington today may show U.S. retail sales stagnated in March after a 1.1 percent gain in February, economists said.
The volume of shares changing hands in companies on the FTSE 100 (UKX) today was 27 percent lower than the average of the last 30 days, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
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