London Markets: EasyJet, TUI Travel gain, but resources weigh on FTSE 100

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LONDON (MarketWatch) — The U.K.’s FTSE 100 edged lower Thursday, with resource shares struggling, but a push higher in travel companies easyJet PLC and TUI Travel PLC helped limit the benchmark’s loss.

Investors later in the session will look for the Bank of England’s policy statement, due at 12:00 p.m. London time. The bank is expected to hold its key rate at a record low level of 0.5%.

The FTSE 100 UKX, -0.09%  slipped 0.1% to 6,708.14, on track for its second consecutive decline.

Rio Tinto PLC RIO, -2.11%  shares were down 0.7%. Goldman Sachs said in a note dated Dec. 3 that it’s retaining its sell rating on the iron-ore miner. It added that Rio Tinto is the most exposed in its iron-ore coverage to continued pressure from additional supply and moderating demand growth in China. Rio Tinto was removed from Goldman’s pan-European conviction sell list.

Oil stocks were again in the red, resuming a recent run of declines as the oil industry grapples with a steep fall in crude prices. Shares of Tullow Oil PLC TLW, -1.09%  fell 0.9%, BP PLC BP., -0.74%  moved 0.7% lower and Royal Dutch Shell PLC RDSB, -0.77%  gave up 0.6%.

But easyJet PLC EZJ, +2.22%  shares climbed 3.8% after the budget carrier said it logged 3.1% growth in passengers in November. Load factor, or the percentage of seats filled with passengers, rose to 89.5% from 89%.

TUI Travel TT., +2.80%  picked up 2.8% as the vacation-package provider posted an 11% rise in underlying operating profit on a constant currency basis for fiscal 2014, surpassing its recently raised forecast.


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