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London stocks slide as policy woes continue

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UK’s blue-chip shares tumbled on Thursday as banks and consumer staples stocks slid, with British prime minister’s views further unnerving investors, a day after the Bank of England promised a debt buy-back to restore market stability.

The export oriented FTSE 100 was down 1.6%, while the more domestically oriented FTSE 250 shed 1.4% by 0719 GMT.

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Britain is facing “very, very difficult” economic times and the government had to launch immediate action to ignite economic growth, Prime Minister Liz Truss said in defense of her tax-cutting budget.

Meanwhile, yields on British government bonds rose on Thursday, after they fell sharply on Wednesday when the Bank of England revived its bond-buying program to quell a gilts sell-off that threatened pension funds in the country.

Consumer staples stocks weighed on the benchmark FTSE 100 index, with British American Tobacco sliding 2.9% as it traded without entitlement to its dividend payout. Banking stocks dropped 2% in early trading.

Miners declined 2.0% as copper prices struggled due to concerns of potential shortages from lower inventories. (Reporting by Johann M Cherian in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)