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Sainsbury's leads FTSE 100 lower, housebuilders hit by Taylor Wimpey warning

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Sainsbury's leads FTSE 100 lower, housebuilders hit by Taylor Wimpey warning
FILE PHOTO: A broker looks at financial information on computer screens on the IG Index trading floor in London, Britain February 6, 2018. REUTERS/Simon Dawson   -   Copyright  SIMON DAWSON(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – British shares were in the red on Thursday as Sainsbury’s shares soured after the company scrapped its proposed takeover of Walmart’s Asda while Taylor Wimpey’s warning on margins whacked housebuilders across the board.

The FTSE 100 lost 0.7 percent and the FTSE 250 down 0.5 percent by 0730 GMT.

Taylor Wimpey shed 6.6 percent after it warned full-year margins would be slightly lower than last year as it cost more to build homes.

Fellow blue-chip housebuilders slipped after the update from Britain’s third-largest homebuilder. Persimmon fell 4 percent, Barratt gave up 3.3 percent and Berkeley lost 2.3 percent.

Sainsbury’s tumbled 6 percent to a near three-year low after the supermarket chain scrapped its proposed 7.3 billion pound takeover of Walmart-owned Asda after the deal was blocked by Britain’s competition regulator.

Shares of rivals Tesco, Morrisons and Ocado were down between 1.6 percent and 2.1 percent.

Barclays’ first-quarter profits fell 10 percent as tough market conditions led to lower earnings at its under-pressure investment bank, sending shares down 1.3 percent.

Stocks trading ex-dividend also dragged the main bourse lower. Legal and General gave up 4.9 percent, miner Antofagasta shed 3.3 percent and Glencore fell 2.5 percent.

Housebuilders on the mid-cap index were also left reeling after Taylor Wimpey’s statement. Bovis Homes skidded 5.4 percent while Redrow, Bellway and Crest Nicholson all fell at least 4 percent.

Tullow Oil sank 5 percent after lowering 2019 output guidance due to problems at its Ghana fields.

Among small stocks, flooring retailer Carpetright surged 47 percent on track for its best day in almost 26 years as it saw significant improvement in UK like-for-like sales in its latest quarter, indicating that restructuring efforts were beginning to pay off.

(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

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