London Markets: Airlines slump in London as FTSE 100 slammed by coronavirus fears

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Associated Press

British Airways planes are parked at Heathrow Airport in London, England.

British stocks joined a global rout on Thursday, on concerns over how the spreading coronavirus will choke off global economic growth.

The FTSE 100 UKX, -2.45%  slumped 2.13% to 6892.69, and has now dropped for five of the last six sessions.

Stock indexes across Europe also were lower, as were U.S. stock futures ES00, -1.26%.

The World Health Organization said there are now more new coronavirus cases outside of China for the first time. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said a patient in California was infected who had not traveled outside the country, as President Donald Trump put Vice President Mike Pence in charge of response efforts.

Bank of America cut its global growth forecast to below 3%, which would be the worst since the 2008 financial crisis.

Decliners included airlines International Consolidated Airlines Group IAG, -9.36%, which stumbled 10%, and Wizz Air WIZZ, -8.32%, which fell 9%.

British Airways owner International Consolidated Airlines also was reacting to the news that a court blocked a third runway from being built at London Heathrow, which is its hub.

Advertising agency WPP WPP, -14.69%  slumped 15% after forecasting flat comparable sales in 2020 and reporting a sharper-than-forecast drop in profit in the fourth quarter.

Hikma Pharmaceuticals HIK, +4.16%  advanced 4.3% after reporting a 33% rise in operating profit on 7% revenue growth for 2019.

Trading in FTSE 100 component NMC Health NMC, +0.00%  was suspended in London after an investigation reported discrepancies in its bank statements and it fired its CEO.

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