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FTSE slips as Unilever slides
After a decent start the FTSE 100 is now in negative territory, trading 0.16% lower at 7,288.18 points.
Connor Campbell, an analyst at SpreadEx, says there are two main reasons for the sluggishness.
"Firstly, [there's] the rather substantial 7% loss by Unilever following Kraft Heinz’s abandoned merger attempt - though it must be noted that the Marmite maker has still benefited from the bid, keeping hold of a decent chunk of last Friday’s growth," he says.
"Secondly the pound has clawed back a portion of the losses it incurred following last week’s disappointing retail sales, with sterling climbing 0.4% against the dollar and 0.3% against the euro."
A weak pound can boost big FTSE-listed companies which generate much of their income in foreign currencies.
Unilever pushes FTSE 100 higher
The FTSE 100 closed higher after the pound fell against the dollar and Unilever shares jumped following a takeover bid.
The index gained 0.3%, or 22.04 points, to 7,299.96.
Unilever was by far the best performer, gaining 12.6%, while bottler Coca Cola HBC and tobacco firm Imperial Brands climbed 2.71% and 2.47% respectively.
The pound fell 0.55% to $1.24210 after a weak set of retail sales figures, although it held up against the euro.
A weak pound boosts the FTSE 100, as many of its constituents make their profits in foreign currencies.
The FTSE 100 is hovering between very slight falls and gains as trading gets underway for the last time this week at 7,278 points.
FTSE 100 and 250 close lower
The FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 indexes both closed lower today following poor performances by commodities firms and a slump in shares in Cobham.
The blue-chip FTSE 100 ended the day down 0.4% at 7,273.95, as shares in miners Anglo American and Antofagasta lost 2-2.2% after the price of copper fell.
A seven-day winning streak for the FTSE 250 also came to an end, after engineering firm Cobham lost 15.1% following yet another profit warning.
The firm took a £150m writedown on a troubled contract with Boeing, leading it to downgrade its 2016 profit target.
FTSE slips as global markets hit record
The FTSE 100 is still in the red at 7,274 points, down 0.4%, as lunchtime rolls around.
Coca-Cola HBC has claimed the top spot on the risers' board, up 3.2%, while AstraZeneca is the biggest loser, down 3.7%.
The fall comes as MSCI's All Country World index, which includes markets in 46 countries, hit a record high on Thursday.
ABN Amro chief investment officer Didier Duret said: "I have rarely seen such as network of positive signals. There is a momentum, we don't know when it will stop, but at the moment it is strong. Investors are rather underinvested anyway and there is lots of cash so equities are the asset class of default in this environment."
FTSE 100 winners and losers
The FTSE 100 has edged down 31 points, or 0.4%, in morning trade to 7,268 points.
Coca-Cola HBC, which bottles and distributes Coca-Cola drinks in 28 countries, has risen 1.3% after posting a €100m rise in annual pre-tax profits. Its shares have jumped 40% in the past 12 months.
The biggest riser is British Airways owner IAG, which is about 2% higher at 513p.
The biggest faller was AstraZeneca - down by 3.7% - while Imperial Brands and BP both shed 1.9%. All three went ex-dividend on Thursday, which is largely responsible for the falls.