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* Smith+Nephew climbs after Credit Suisse upgrades to
* Wizz Air likely to fly more this summer - CEO
* All eyes on ECB policy meeting, U.S. CPI data on Thursday
* FTSE 100 down 0.2%, FTSE 250 off 0.6%
June 9 (Reuters) - British shares ended lower on Thursday
after broadly underperforming their European peers, dragged
down by heavyweight financial and mining stocks in a thin
trading session before a key European Central Bank meeting and
U.S. inflation numbers.
The blue-chip index fell 0.2%, with home-builder
stocks and life insurers leading
Banks gave up -1.6%, with HSBC Holdings
being the top drag, down 1.4%, after Moody's downgraded
its senior insecured debt rating to A3 from A2.
The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index
declined -0.6% to a nearly two-week low over risks arising from
a small jump in COVID-19 cases and the lack of a breakthrough in
post-Brexit talks with the European Union.
World stocks hovered near record highs and U.S. bond yields
fell, boosting the appeal of technology stocks as future
inflation pressures ease.
"With uncertainty ahead of tomorrows ECB rate meeting,
investors appear to be keeping their powder dry ahead of the
announcement and the May CPI numbers from the US," said Michael
Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets.
After breaking above the 7,000 mark in mid-April, the FTSE
100 index has oscillated in a narrow range on worries that rapid
economic growth could lead to higher inflation and faster
tightening of ultra-loose monetary policies.
Among stocks, Smith+Nephew jumped 2.3% and was among
the top performers in the FTSE 100 index, after Credit Suisse
upgraded the medical products maker's stock to "outperform" from
Clinigen Group slumped -26.4% as RBC cut its price
target on the stock after the pharmaceutical company forecast
annual adjusted EBITDA within the range of 114 million pounds
and 117 million pounds, lower than market expectations.
Upper Crust owner SSP Group dropped -1.9% after it
reported a first-half loss of 182 million pounds ($257.62
Wizz Air ended 3.3% higher. It is likely to fly
more this summer than it did pre-pandemic, its chief executive
said, as European COVID-19 travel restrictions
(Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu
Sahu and Timothy Heritage)