FTSE falls on recovery jitters; ICAP slumps

* FTSE falls 1.5 percent; miners hurt by lower metals prices

* U.S. non farm payroll data mixed

* Energy stocks fall; crude down, BG results

* BAE Systems higher on British and U.S. settlement

By David Brett

LONDON, Feb 5 (BestGrowthStock) – Britain’s top share index fell 1.5
percent on Friday on fears over the health of the global
recovery as U.S. employment data failed to impress, while ICAP
(IAP.L: ) tumbled following a warning on profits.

ICAP, the world’s biggest interdealer broker, topped the
blue-chip fallers, down nearly 20 percent after the company said
full-year earnings would miss analysts’ expectations.
[ID:nLDE61404V]

The FTSE 100 (.FTSE: ) closed down 78.39 points at 5,060.92,
posting a weekly fall of 2.5 percent, its fourth-straight weekly
decline; the index is now down 6.5 percent in 2010.

Energy stocks were led lower by BG Group (BG.L: ), off 3.2
percent after its fourth-quarter earnings, excluding non
operations, missed expectations.

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: ) and BP (BP.L: ), which both posted
disappointing quarterly results this week, each shed 0.9
percent.

Miners were also under pressure, as metals prices retreated
as investors turned to the safe-haven of the dollar.

Sterling (GBP=: ) fell to an eight-and-a-half month low
against the dollar as concerns over euro zone sovereign debt
problems boosted the appeal of the greenback. [ID:LDE6141WC]

Xstrata (XTA.L: ) and Randgold Resources (RRS.L: ) were among
the fallers, down 5.2 and 2 percent respectively and ahead of
their results on Monday.

Global stock markets suffered this week on fears that
troubles in Greece and other southern members of the euro zone,
including Portugal and Spain, could impede or even derail an
economic recovery that helped equities surge in 2009.

“This is a fear-driven fall. Jitters have spread as
investors continue to fret over sovereign debt worries in
Europe. Hopefully this will be short-lived,” said Jimmy Yates,
head of equities at CMC Markets.

Banks dropped, with Barclays (BARC.L: ), HSBC (HSBA.L: ), Lloyds
Banking Group (LLOY.L: ), Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L: ) and
Standard Chartered (STAN.L: ) dropping 1.2 to 5.7 percent.

The Bank of England will almost certainly revise down its
growth forecasts for this year while ramping up its inflation
profile when it unveils its quarterly Inflation Report on
Wednesday, according to a Reuters poll. [ID:nLDE614167]

U.S. DATA MIXED

U.S. employers unexpectedly cut 20,000 in January, but the
unemployment rate surprisingly fell to a five-month low of 9.7
percent, according to a government report that hinted at some
labour market improvement starting to take root. [ID:nN04115255]

Europe’s biggest defence contractor BAE Systems (BAES.L: ) was
among the few risers on the FTSE 100, up 1.6 percent after the
firm reached a settlement with the United States and the UK that
will see it pay total fines of around $450 million, and draws a
line under a long-running corruption investigation on both sides
of the Atlantic. [ID:nLDE6141WV]

Compass (CPG.L: ) was the biggest riser, adding 5.1 percent
after the caterer said it made a good start to its current
fiscal year, with its rate of sales decline slowing and its
pipeline of new business remaining strong. [ID:nLDE61408Z]

Liberty International (LII.L: ) was also in favour, putting on
1 percent, with the mall owner mulling a radical division of its
portfolio into two separate listed companies as it battles to
bounce back from the worst property crash in decades.

“When you look down at a lot of the fundamentals it’s all
pretty good. At the moment fear is overriding logic, but its
good to have a bit volatility back in the market and we’ve had a
bounce off the psychological 5,000 barrier,” Yates said.

Stock Market Money

(Editing by Rupert Winchester)

FTSE falls on recovery jitters; ICAP slumps