FTSE dips after Trump win though pharma, gold miners surge

By Kit Rees

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's top share index fell on Wednesday after a shock win for Republican Donald Trump in the U.S. presidential election sent markets lower, though gold miners and pharma stocks soared.

Trump defeated favourite Hillary Clinton in Tuesday's election, putting the U.S. on an uncertain path and prompting investors to dump risky assets such as stocks.

The blue chip FTSE 100 <.FTSE> index fell 0.1 percent to 6,837.87 points by 0932 GMT, having rallied in the previous session on expectation of a Clinton victory. The more domestically-focused FTSE 250 index <.FTMC> rose 0.2 pct.

The FTSE 100 had opened 2 percent lower, but recovered off its lows. Analysts cited Trump's acceptance speech as soothing investor nerves.

"I think the market over-reacted slightly this morning," John Moore, advisory investment manager at Berkeley Capital, said, adding that he wouldn't be surprised if the FTSE 100 turned positive.

"I think Trump is pro-business. The thing is, looking towards the FTSE, there are several stocks that will benefit from a Trump victory, such as the pharmaceuticals sector. Hillary Clinton wanted to impose tighter regulations, whereas Trump is opposed to that."

Healthcare stocks Hikma <HIK.L>, Shire <SHP.L>, Astrazeneca <AZN.L> and GlaxoSmithKline <GSK.L> rallied, gaining between 2 percent to 6.7 percent on the back of Trump's win.

Pharma stocks had been losing ground in the run-up to the election on worries that a Clinton presidency would put pressure on drug prices.

Some companies with significant exposure to the United States also rose. CRH <CRH.L> a construction firm which had been touted as a potential beneficiary from any increase in U.S. infrastructure spending, jumped 7 percent, as it derives 50 percent of its revenues from there. U.S.-focused Ashtead <AHT.L> also soared 7.6 percent.

Investors' flight to safety buoyed shares in precious metals miner Fresnillo <FRES.L>, which jumped over 9 percent, along with Randgold Resources <RRS.L>, which gained more than 7 percent after the price of gold surged.

Shares in banking stocks <.FTNMX8350>, however, came under pressure, while British grocers fell after Sainsbury <SBRY.L> reported an underwhelming set of results and dropped 3.2 percent. The supermarket reported a third straight decline in first-half profit, hurt by a fall in sales.

(Reporting by Kit Rees; Editing by Toby Chopra)

Article Published: 09/11/2016