People wearing face masks, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, walk through an empty shopping center in Leeds, northern England, on Nov. 4, 2020.
One in seven U.K. companies say they had little to no confidence they’ll survive the next three months, according to a survey released on Thursday showing the depth of the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The Office for National Statistics said the study, with collections as recent as Nov. 15, found confidence was particularly shaken in accommodation and food services, where 34% said they had little to no confidence they’ll survive.
The survey countered further good news on the vaccine front, with a study showing the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca AZN, -0.13% candidate producing a strong immune response in older adults who are most susceptible to the virus.
The FTSE 100 UKX, -0.80% dropped 1%, with the previously hot oil sector pacing the declines. BP BP, -3.39% and Royal Dutch Shell RDSA, -2.90% each dropped about 3%, though the FTSE 350 oil-and-gas sector 157004, +0.29% has surged 27% over the last month.
Kingfisher KGF, -4.84%, the operator of home-improvement retailers, dropped 5%. It said like-for-like sales jumped 17% in the third quarter ending Oct. 31, though sales growth has slowed to 13% through Nov. 14 due to lockdowns in France, Poland and Spain.
Johnson Matthey’s JMAT, -4.66% shares dropped 5%, as the chemicals maker trimmed its dividend and didn’t provide financial guidance after reporting a 42% drop in underlying operating profit in its fiscal first half.