Ex-dividend stocks push FTSE lower
The top flight was 27.8 points lower at 5813.4 after a number of high-profile stocks went ex-dividend, meaning that shares no longer hold the right to the most recent shareholder award.
Standard Chartered showed sign of recovery after losing 16% of its value on Tuesday in the wake of a US regulator's accusations that the bank was a "rogue institution" for allegedly breaching sanctions on Iran.
The UK bank has hit back, saying 99.9% of the alleged transactions complied with regulations and that any breaches were "small clerical errors". Shares were 85p higher at 1315p, a rebound of 7%.
Rio Tinto was also on the risers board after it posted first half figures that were in line with expectations and said it expected a pick up in demand in the fourth quarter. Shares were 51.5p higher at 3182.5p, but there was little reaction from other stocks in the sector.
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