FTSE 100 shrugs off fall in insurance shares

image source, Getty Images

The London market closed higher, but shares in insurance companies slid following a change to how personal injury claims are calculated.

The change, made by the Ministry of Justice, is expected to increase payouts to accident victims and affect insurance companies' profits.

Direct Line shares fell 7% while Admiral Group dropped about 3%.

Despite this, the benchmark FTSE 100 index finished 9.30 points, or 0.1%, higher at 7,253.

Shares in the owner of the London Stock Exchange dropped 1.12% after doubts were raised over the prospect of its planned tie-up with Deutsche Boerse.

The LSE said the deal was unlikely to be approved by the European Commission, after it disagreed with the Commission's order for it to sell its 60% stake in MTS, a fixed-income trading platform.

Persimmon closed 0.25% higher after the housebuilder reported a 23% rise in annual profits and gave an upbeat description of recent trading.

On the foreign exchanges, the pound edged lower against most other currencies, with analysts putting the fall down to speculation about another referendum on Scottish independence.

Sterling dropped 0.54% against the euro to 1.17380 euros, and was flat against the US dollar at $1.2456.