open: Stocks fall as Greece enters crunch talks over debt deal
UK stock markets fell on Friday morning after
the collapse of Greek debt talks at the Eurogroup meeting the previous
day. The FTSE 100 was down 0.72% at 6,758.47 in early trading, as gains
in the supermarket sector were offset by weakness among miners as investors
scaled back their appetite for riskier assets.
Greece’s international creditors have given the government a weekend deadline
to come to a debt deal or risk defaulting on its €1.6bn repayment due to the
IMF on 30 June.
After failing to reach an agreement on Thursday, German Chancellor Angela
Merkel said another Eurogroup meeting on Saturday would be decisive for finding
a solution for the Greek crisis, adding that an agreement must be reached
before markets open on Monday morning. This would mark the fifth Eurogroup
meeting in nine days.
Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem said that the door was still
“open” for Greece to come with new proposals “or accept what is
on the table”.
“With talks collapsing yet again on Thursday, it is looking like the
crunchiest of crunch weeks will have to extend into the weekend,” said Spreadex analyst Connor
Tesco rises, miners fall
Supermarket chain Tesco gained after reporting that the ongoing slide in
sales was slowing. UK like-for-like sales fell by 1.3% in the 13 weeks to 30
May, after 1.7% and 5.1% declines seen in the fourth and third quarters of the
previous financial year.
Sector rivals Morrisons and Sainsbury’s were also higher.
However, just seven constituents on the FTSE 100 were in positive territory
Mining stocks were out of favour as risk appetite faltered, with Glencore,
BHP Billiton and Anglo American in the red.
Energy services outfit Wood Group declined after analysts at Beaufort Securities lowered
their rating on the stock to ‘hold’, while sector peer Petrofac fell after
being cut to ‘sell’ at Deutsche