London stocks fall on caution ahead of U.S. inflation data

London stocks fell on Tuesday as traders returning from a long weekend were cautious ahead of a key U.S. inflation data that could offer hints on the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy path.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 fell 0.3% after a holiday on Monday for the official coronation of King Charles over the weekend, while the FTSE 250 midcap index was down 0.7%.

JD Sports Fashion rose 1.8% after Britain’s biggest sportswear retailer said it had proposed to acquire France-based sportswear retailer Courir for an enterprise value of 520 million euros ($572.42 million).

International Consolidated Airlines Group (LON:ICAG) S.A gained 1.1% after Peel Hunt raised the British Airways owner’s rating to “buy” from “hold”. The broader travel and leisure index gained 0.9%.

“Travel stocks have had a really nice run for the last few days,” said Christopher Peters, trading floor manager at Accendo Markets.

“From mid-April, we’ve seen a decline in oil prices. That has an effect on costs for the airlines and travel stocks.”

Energy stocks dipped 1.2%, as oil prices relinquished some of the strong gains of the previous two sessions ahead of U.S. inflation data due on Wednesday. [O/R]

Direct Line Insurance Group lost 6.1% after the motor insurer said it expected more adverse claims in motor to pressure its earnings in 2023.

Marshalls tanked 13.2% after the hard landscaping, building and roofing products supplier said it expected to miss its full-year expectations.

Investors are awaiting the Bank of England’s rate decision on Thursday, with the central bank widely expected to raise its bank rate by 25 basis points.

British house prices rose just 0.1% in April, the smallest year-on-year increase since December 2012, mortgage lender Halifax said.

Real estate stocks fell 2.4%.

($1 = 0.9084 euros)

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