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U.S. recession fears, Brexit jitters spook UK shares

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U.S. recession fears, Brexit jitters spook UK shares
FILE PHOTO: The London Stock Exchange Group offices are seen in the City of London, Britain, December 29, 2017. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo   -   Copyright  Toby Melville(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – Britain’s main index slipped on Monday as growing fears of a recession in the United States and uncertainty over Brexit kept investors on the sidelines, while satellite operator Inmarsat jumped after agreeing to be bought out.

The FTSE 100 fell 0.6 percent by 0812 GMT amid a broader sell-off in global markets. The FTSE 250 was down 0.5 percent, hitting its lowest since Feb. 15.

Cautious remarks from the U.S. Federal Reserve and weak manufacturing data from Germany and the United States last week once again raised concerns about the health of the world economy and made stocks, generally considered riskier assets, less appealing to investors.

Stocks fell across the board, with U.S. recession fears especially hitting miners, oil majors as well as internationally exposed components on the main bourse. [O/R]

The next steps on Britain’s divorce from the European Union were also up in the air after Prime Minister Theresa May spoke to some lawmakers on Sunday to muster support for her twice heavily defeated Brexit deal amid reports her cabinet was plotting to oust her.

Nearly all FTSE 100 companies were trading in the red by 0821 GMT.

Stocks on the domestically focused mid-cap index were also pummelled but Inmarsat jumped 7 percent after a private equity-led consortium agreed to buy the satellite operator for about $3.4 billion in cash.

Medical devices maker ConvaTec added 3.5 percent after naming Genus’ top boss Karim Bitar as its chief executive officer.

AIM-listed Majestic Wine tanked 16 percent on track for its worst day since November after it said it would review its dividend policy as it looks to focus on its online wine retail business Naked Wines.

(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi and Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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