London stocks slip as consumer shares drag on recession fears

January 10, 2023 08:02 PM AEDT | By Reuters
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(Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 retreated from a three-and-a-half year high on Tuesday, led by consumer stocks amid recession worries, with investors assessing hawkish commentary from members of the U.S. Federal Reserve overnight.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 lost 0.3%, while the domestically-focussed FTSE 250 midcap index fell 0.3%.

Consumer staples such as Diageo, Ocado and Unilever were among the biggest drags on the blue-chip index, after NielsenIQ warned that weak confidence around personal finances and a squeeze on disposable income will hold back growth in food retail sales.

As fears of a downturn loom large, investors are looking for clues on future rate hikes from a speech by Fed Chair Jerome Powell at a panel discussion in Stockholm at 1400 GMT. On Monday, Fed officials said inflation data due later this week will underpin the decisions about the rate hike path.

Britain's labour market cooled further in December a survey showed, hinting that the Bank of England's (BoE) concerns about the risk of longer-term inflation may ease. But worries remained as BoE chief economist warned of persistent inflationary pressure.

(Reporting by Shashwat Chauhan in Bengaluru; Editing by Dhanya Ann Thoppil)


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