LONDON -- U.K. stocks ended the week in much the same way as they started -- soggy.
ended 86.0 points lower, or 1.4%, at 6,193, ending a wretched week with a wretched session.
Even the technology-rich
index could only manage a rise of 0.24% to 4,847. Of course, there is nothing mysterious about this. The tech sector has experienced an inevitable bout of profit-taking -- better known as "let's grab the cash and run" -- after soaring throughout the week.
slid 197 pence, or 4.0%, to 45.05 pounds,
retreated 163p, or 2.7%, to 66.03 pounds, and
lost 141p, or 5.1%, to 23.90 pounds.
Profit-taking was not just confined to the highfliers. Media stocks and financial issues succumbed to pre-weekend profit-taking.
fell 119p, or 3.2%, to 22.69 pounds, while
ended at 17.2 pounds, down 119p, or 6.5%.
In the banks,
shed 26p, or 1.7%, to 14.71 pounds, and
dipped 60p, or 8.8%, to 626 after its annual results. By way of contrast,
rose 26p, or 2.3%, to 11.73 pounds, with the bid battle fought and won by
Royal Bank of Scotland
, which ended 4p, or 0.5%, cheaper at 871. The jilted
Bank of Scotland
fell 63p, or 9.3%, to 614.
The Continent's stock markets closed out the week with a mixed performance, as a lower open on Wall Street knocked the wind out of some indices' sails. After climbing further into record territory early on, the
in Frankfurt abruptly changed tack and closed down 97.72, or 1.27%, at 7611.55. However, the
in Paris was able to finish 79.49 higher, or 1.3%, at 6287.01.
One Frankfurt stock able to fight the sudden downturn was
, which continued to benefit from speculation of an imminent takeover by
. Commerzbank's shares ended 1.45 euros higher, or 4.1%, at 36.80 after surging almost 10% Thursday and ABN Amro finished down 0.13 euros, or 0.6%, at 20.65 in Amsterdam.
Owing to the Dax's reversal, few tech and telecom investors were able to head into the weekend with a warm fuzzy feeling.
closed down 6 euros, or 3.5%, at 164.50 and
finished down 7 euros, or 2.2%, at 315.
Epcos' parent company
was a little more fortunate than its subsidiary and ended down 1.50 euros, or 0.9%, to 171.50. Dax heavyweight
also closed lower, ending Friday down 2.90 euros, or 3.2%, at 89.10.
Despite the volatility, in Paris there was a little more happiness to go around at the end of the day, as
closed up 5.90 euros, or 3.5%, at 172.90.