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July 9, 2020, 6:45 a.m. EDT

Pound advances, sending FTSE 100 lower

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By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch


Getty Images
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (L) speaks to an employee during a visit to the Worcester Bosch factory in Worcester, central England, on July 9, 2020.

The pound advanced on Thursday, with the gains for the U.K. currency proving a drag for the shares of British exporters.

The pound /zigman2/quotes/210561263/realtime/sampled GBPUSD +0.4507%  traded at $1.2652 vs. Wednesday’s close of $1.2611.

The U.K. discussion continued to be on the £30 billion spending plan unveiled by Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak.

“Importantly, [Wednesday’s] statement marked an important turning point; with the Treasury moving away from looking to keep people attached to their current employer, and turning attention towards helping people get back into employment,” said Michael Brown, senior market analyst at Caxton.

The pound’s strength had the opposite impact on the FTSE 100 /zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed UK:UKX -0.09% , which slumped 0.6%, the worst of the major regional markets in Europe.

Troubled engine maker Rolls-Royce /zigman2/quotes/203646520/delayed UK:RR +0.60%  slumped 8%, as the company took a $1.45 billion hit for closing currency hedges early, citing the deterioration in the medium-term outlook caused by COVID-19. Rolls-Royce says that it may announce noncash accounting adjustments when its first-half results are announced.

Shares of U.K. home builder Persimmon /zigman2/quotes/206444744/delayed UK:PSN +0.41%  rose 6% after it said net reservations rose 30% year-over-year in the final six weeks to June 30.

/zigman2/quotes/210561263/realtime/sampled
US : Tullett Prebon
1.3374
+0.0060 +0.4507%
Volume: 0.0000
Nov. 30, 2020 9:07a
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed
UK : FTSE UK
6,362.04
-5.54 -0.09%
Volume: 278,080
Nov. 30, 2020 1:52p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/203646520/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
108.30 p
+0.65 +0.60%
Volume: 15.00M
Nov. 30, 2020 1:52p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
£9.01 billion
Rev. per Employee
N/A
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/206444744/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
2,707.00 p
+11.00 +0.41%
Volume: 332,453
Nov. 30, 2020 1:52p
P/E Ratio
12.79
Dividend Yield
4.06%
Market Cap
£8.59 billion
Rev. per Employee
£690,520
loading...

Steve Goldstein is MarketWatch markets editor for Europe. Follow him on Twitter: @MKTWgoldstein.

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