FTSE 100 OPEN: Miners drag stocks down on China demand fears

The FTSE 100 dropped after opening this morning as investors await the latest batch of UK inflation numbers and fears emerge over China’s metal demand.

The blue-chip index was down 25.32 points to 5,935.79 as of 0807 GMT, with mining stocks accounting for the five biggest fallers in early trading. The FSTE follows falls in Asian markets this morning.

The Office for National Statistics is due to publish February’s consumer prices and retail prices indices at 0930 GMT, which are keenly watched by investors. Resources stocks were also hampered by fears that demand for China – the world’s biggest consumer of metal – is on the brink of slowing.

Randgold Resources was down 2.29% to 6,410p, making it the largest faller after opening. Rio Tinto lost 1.81% to hit 3,549p and BHP Billiton fell 1.76% to 2,012p. Vedanta dropped 1.69% to 1,394p while Kazakhmys eased 1.66% to 949p.

The morning’s strongest gainers were steel producer Evraz (up 1.04% to 408.60p), telecommunications firm Vodafone (up 0.90% to 168.85p), chip manufacturer ARM Holdings (up 0.86% to 585p), National Grid (up 0.79% to 637p) and supermarket giant Tesco (up 0.62% to 333.05p).