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* FTSE 100 down 0.6 pct
* Lloyds leads banks after results
* Mediclinic jumps after Abu Dhabi scraps co-payments
* Miners, ex-divs weigh
By Kit Rees
LONDON, April 27 Britain's top shares index fell
on Thursday, on track to snap a three-day winning streak as
miners and ex-dividends weighed.
Banks provided support as did a jump in Mediclinic's
Britain's blue chip FTSE 100 index was down 0.6
percent at 7,248.50 points by 0919 GMT, in line with broader
weakness on European equity markets.
First quarter results for British lenders were the main
focus as Lloyds reported profit figures beating
analysts' expectations, sending its shares 3.6 percent higher,
close to pre-Brexit levels.
"I think all the consensus numbers we were looking at looked
to be beaten to the upside," Mike van Dulken, head of research
at Accendo Markets, said.
"Falling conduct costs, the UK economy holding up, the
housing market doing ok - they're all a decent recipe, I think,
Royal Bank of Scotland also rose 1.5 percent.
Mediclinic was the biggest gainer, soaring nearly
20 percent after the Abu Dhabi government scrapped a 20 percent
co-payment requirement for treatment at private facilities.
The measure was introduced last July, just after Mediclinic
had bought Abu Dhabi private hospital group Al Noor for about
"Although we expect little near-term benefit, it adds
support to the (long term) investment case so we expect a
near-term positive share price reaction on sentiment ahead of
more details being disclosed," James Vane-Tempest, equity
analyst at Jefferies, said in a note.
Earnings were also a focus for UK housebuilders, another
sector which was hit after Britain voted to leave the European
Union back in June 2016 due to the sector's dependence on the
Shares in Persimmon advanced 1.3 percent after the
housebuilder said that total forward sales revenue including
completions was up by about 11 percent year on year, while
Taylor Wimpey gained 0.3 percent after a positive update
and optimistic outlook for 2017.
The FTSE 100 was pulled lower by firms trading ex-dividend,
such as Legal & General, which fell 5.7 percent, and
Informa, down 2.2 percent.
Miners also weighed, with Glencore, Rio Tinto
and BHP Billiton all down between 1.2 percent to
1.9 percent, tracking a weaker copper price.
WPP, the world's largest advertising group, fell 2.2
percent after first-quarter earnings. Its sales growth came in
just below expectations with a weak performance in North
(Reporting by Kit Rees; Editing by Angus MacSwan)