(Reuters) – London’s main index dipped on Wednesday as tobacco giants fell after American rivals Philip Morris and Altria confirmed merger talks, while a deeper inversion of the U.S. treasury yield rekindled fears of a global recession.
The FTSE 100 <.FTSE> slipped 0.3%, down for the fourth straight session, while the midcap index <.FTMC> inched 0.5% lower by 0710 GMT, after getting a boost in the previous session from the opposition parties pledge to avert a no-deal Brexit.
British American Tobacco <BATS.L> and Imperial Brands <IMB.L> were lower by 1% and 2%, respectively, after news overnight that Philip Morris <PM.N> and Altria <MO.N> were in talks to reunite.
Losses were limited by a 1.1% rise in BP <BP.L> after the British oil major announced a deal to sell all its Alaskan properties for $5.6 billion to privately held Hilcorp Energy.
Small-cap tour operator Thomas Cook <TCG.L> tumbled 15% after a substantial agreement on terms of a rescue package, which Jefferies analysts said could lead to the company’s shares being de-listed.
(Reporting by Muvija M and Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)