(For a Reuters live blog on U.S., UK and European stock
markets, click LIVE/ or type LIVE/ in a news window)
* Unilever shares near five-year low
* UK employers add record number of jobs in December
* FTSE 100 down 0.6%, FTSE 250 off 1.0%
Jan 18 (Reuters) - London's FTSE 100 ended lower on Tuesday
weighed down by shares of consumer companies and industrial
stocks, while improving employment conditions in the UK and
rising U.S. Treasury yields signaled growing bets of tighter
The blue-chip index fell 0.6%, with
consumer-focussed companies such as Diageo and Unilever
and industrial stocks under pressure.
Nasdaq traders were braced for a fresh pounding on Tuesday
as a seven-year high for oil prices drove up global borrowing
costs to pre-COVID levels, with even sub-zero German Bund yields
at the brink of positive territory again.
"The recent swings in the U.S. Treasury have created a
flutter in the global financial markets with market participants
bracing for the beginning of a tighter monetary policy era, most
likely from March 2022," said Kunal Sawhney, chief executive at
research firm Kalkine.
Meanwhile, data showed British employers added a record
184,000 staff to their payrolls in December, showing little sign
of being affected by the impact of the Omicron coronavirus
"Employment data for the quarter to November and the
inflation (CPI) data slated to be released tomorrow could become
a trigger for the next rate hike in February," Sawhney added.
The FTSE 100 has outperformed the wider STOXX 600
since the beginning of this year as bets on increased interest
rates lifted bank stocks and higher oil prices supported energy
Unilever extended declines from the previous
session, and was down 4.0%, near a five-year low, as the company
signaled on Monday it would pursue a deal for GSK's
consumer business, calling it a "strong strategic fit."
The domestically focussed mid-cap index fell 1.0%
THG dropped 9.6% after the online retail platform
warned its adjusted core earnings margin would fall short of
market expectations due to adverse currency movements.
Just Group gained 8.2% as the insurer said its
retirement income and new business profits grew last year.
(Reporting by Shashank Nayar and Amal S in Bengaluru; Editing
by Uttaresh.V, Shounak Dasgupta and Jonathan Oatis)