The UK’s top share index eased back from a record high yesterday after a sluggish performance from blue-chip energy stocks.
London’s main market, the FTSE 100, ended the session half a percentage point lower at 7,648.10 points on the first trading day of the year after a record-setting 2017.
Oil major BP dropped 1%, or 5.2p to 517.5p, after it said it would stomach a one-off, £1billion-plus hit from US President Donald Trump’s tax reforms.
The company said the reduction of the US federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21%, which came into force on Monday, meant future US earnings would be “positively impacted”.
But the reform will require a revaluation of BP’s US deferred tax assets and liabilities, with the impact of the “one-off non-cash charge” estimated at around £1.1billion.
Royal Dutch Shell was also in the doldrums, down 8.5p at £25, after it said it was no longer offloading its Danish refining business for £60million to Dansk Olieselskab.
The deal, announced in September 2016, was expected to complete last year.
Consumer staples took the most points off the Footsie as shares in British American Tobacco, Diageo and Unilever declined. They all generate a large part of their revenues overseas.
Miners reversed early session losses in later trade, with Anglo American, Rio Tinto and Glencore gaining between 1.1% and 2.9%.
British Airways owner International Consolidated Airlines Group was among the biggest risers – up nearly 3%, or 17.8p to 668.8p, after confirming a £17.7million takeover of Austrian airline Niki.