The FTSE 100 index stalled slightly in early trading, falling just below the 5,500 mark as few stocks showed big rises.
The blue chip index dropped 0.5% to 5,499 (at 0828 GMT).
Global satellite communications company Inmarsat was the heaviest faller (at 0819 GMT), dropping by 2.8% to 411.6p.
It was joined at the bottom by Eurasian Natural Resources, which dropped 2.3% to 669p, and miner Xstrata, down 1.7% to 994.8p.
Engineer Meggitt slipped 1.3% lower to 353.8p, as Asia-focused bank Standard Chartered went 1.2% lower to 1,440.5p.
The biggest riser was Essar Energy (at 0816 GMT), up 0.8% to 224.7p. Packaging company Rexam and clothing retailer Next both increased by 0.4% to 348.8p and 2,605p, respectively.
Telecoms company BT and business software company Sage both rose 0.3% to 194p and 287.4p, respectively.
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