The FTSE 100 Index struggled to find direction today as better-than-expected figures on the US economy offset disappointing updates from Apple and Amazon.
London’s main market closed flat at 5,806.7 after figures revealed the US economy grew at an annualised rate of 2% in the third quarter, better than the 1.8% rise forecast by analysts on Wall Street due to strong consumer spending.
The figures managed to lift some of the gloom caused by tech giants Amazon and Apple saying they were hit by the cost of launching new products.
Chip designer ARM Holdings, whose products are used to power many of Apple’s devices, fell 1%, or 8.5p to 656.5p despite it posting a strong set of results earlier in the week.
Prudential was off 16p at £8.37, Wood Group fell 15p to 833.5p and Standard Life shed 4.2p to £2.84.
Mining firms Kazakhmys and Vedanta Resources were among other Footsie fallers, off 21.5p at 714.5p and 9p lower at £11.27 respectively.
But another miner, Anglo American, lifted 4%, or up 76p to £19.33.5p after it announced plans for the departure of chief executive Cynthia Carroll following more than five years in the role.
Shares in Financial Times publisher Pearson were 9p higher at £12.21 after it said it was in discussions with Random House’s German owner, Bertelsmann, about a merger involving its publishing arm Penguin.
Other big risers included Evraz ahead 4.3p at 239.7p, Weir Group up 29p at £17.17 and Burberry 19p higher at £11.53.
Mark Ireland, of investment manager and financial planning specialist Brewin Dolphin in Inverness, noted John Swan and Sons gaining 8.3% to £3.25, STV Group rising 6.5% to £1.01 and Bridge Energy up 3.6% at 143.5p.
Johnston Press fell 3.7% to 10p and John Menzies slipped 2.9% to £6.07.