Recent volatility in housebuilding shares continued today following the release of downbeat price data from building society Nationwide.
The latest news, showing prices declined for a fifth month in a row, unsettled Charles Church owner Persimmon, which topped the FTSE 100 Index fallers board with a drop of 6% or 48.5p to 741p.
Stronger mining and oil firms ensured the Footsie achieved positive territory overall, with the top flight index ahead 5.1 points at 5722.6 by mid-morning.
Enterprise Inns led the risers after tax and legal advice indicated it should be in a position to covert to tax-efficient REIT status, boosting potential returns to shareholders. With trading also in line with expectations, Enterprise shares rose 10%, or 36.5p to 400.5p.
Elsewhere in the pubs sector, Punch Taverns lifted 4% – or 20p at 538.5p – amid relief over its decision not to pursue a potential merger with rival Mitchells & Butlers. The All Bar One owner recovered from a weak start to stand 3p higher at 332.5p.
Other notable moves during the session included British Airways, as investors started to fret about the level of cancellations being caused by a second day of problems at Terminal 5. Shares were off 3% or 7.75p at 239.5p.
As well as the falls for housebuilders, sentiment towards retailers was weak after the release of poor consumer confidence figures. Marks & Spencer dipped 3% or 11.25p to 397.5p, while Next was off 27p at 1171p and B&Q owner Kingfisher eased 2.9p to 127.5p.
In the FTSE 250 Index, Barratt Developments slipped 7% after broker Panmure Gordon added to pain in the sector by issuing a sell note on the stock, which fell 30.75p to 407.25p. Newcastle-based Bellway eased 38p to 847p and Redrow dipped 10p to 304.5p – offsetting gains seen yesterday.