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FTSE Close: FTSE 100 stumbles as vaping tax, housebuilder probe weigh

The FTSE 100 closed slightly lower today, down 0.02% at 7,683.02. Market sentiment was weighed down by concerns over a potential vaping tax and an investigation into housebuilders. Imperial Brands suffered the biggest fall, with …

The FTSE 100 closed slightly lower today, down 0.02% at 7,683.02. Market sentiment was weighed down by concerns over a potential vaping tax and an investigation into housebuilders.

Imperial Brands suffered the biggest fall, with its share price dropping 4.8% following an announcement by Jeremy Hunt that he may introduce a new UK tax on vapes. This news also impacted British American Tobacco, whose share price shed 0.3%.

Croda International also declined, with its share price slumping 3.2% after reporting a drop in annual profit. Sales fell 19% year-on-year to £1.69 billion, missing analyst expectations, while pretax profit declined by 70% to £236.3 million.

The broader market displayed mixed performance. The FTSE 250 rose 0.2% to 19,163.66, while the AIM All-Share fell slightly by 0.13% to 745.65.

Daily Recap

Adding to the market’s sluggishness, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced an investigation into seven major housebuilders, including Barratt Developments, for “suspected sharing of commercially sensitive information.” This news sent housebuilders further down, with Barratt Developments leading the decline, losing 1.5%.

Despite the downbeat market, some companies managed to outperform. Medical technology company Smith & Nephew surpassed expectations with its full-year results, pushing its shares up 1.2%. On the Beach, the beach package holiday retailer, saw its shares surge 13% after signing a long-term distribution agreement with budget airline Ryanair.

Daily Risers and Fallers

FTSE All-Share risers: On The Beach 13.44%, Close Bros 7.78%, Capita 6.04%, Gulf Marine Services 5.99%, Carnival 5.75%, Dowlais 5.23%, Watches Switz 4.7%, Mobico Group 4.58%, Darktrace 4.34%, Petra Diamonds 4.3%.

FTSE All-Share fallers: Zotefoams -4.86%, Imperial Brands -4.84%, Lsl Prop -4%, Cab Payments -3.75%, Funding Circle -3.47%, Abrdn -3.28%, Reach Plc -3.24%, Croda International -3.16%, Hunting -3.13%, FDM Group -3.07%.

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