FTSE dragged lower by mining stocks
London's main benchmark was dragged lower by a decline in mining stocks Reuters

The UK equity market declined on 6 January, as commodities-related stocks were again under pressure on the back of fresh worries over the health of the Chinese economy. London's blue-chip FTSE 100 index fell 1.04% to 6,073.38.

Miners, which had provided a lift to the benchmark in the previous session, acted as a drag, with the FTSE 350 Mining Index down over 5% as investors remained concerns by volatility in the world's second largest economy.

Anglo American, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto all lost more than 4%, while Glencore and Antofagasta were also among the worst performers on the day, both falling around 3%.

"We are in a new world – China's not growing [in] double digits, demand for raw materials has fallen through the floor and it's both a supply and demand side problem," said Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets.

Oil giants BP and Royal Dutch Shell were also in the red, after the price of Brent crude hit a fresh 11-year low, as geopolitical tension between Saudi Arabia and Iran showed no sign of abating.

The decline in oil prices was also felt on the FTSE 250 index, with Tullow Oil and Cairn Energy plunging 7% and 5% respectively, while mining group Evraz fell more than 2% due to concerns over the economic climate in China.

There was better news for retailers, with Next and Marks & Spencer both on the front foot, the former rebounding from a disappointing set of results, while the latter shrugged off concerns over weak Christmas sales ahead of its trading update on 7 January.

Security group BAE Systems was the top riser on the FTSE 100 after analysts at RBC Capital Markets upgraded their rating on the stock from "outperform" to "top pick" by and raised their target price from 570p to 630p.

Bookmaker Bwin.party was the best performer on London's second tier index, edging higher after it revealed on 5 January that its fourth-quarter net revenue was 5% higher year-on-year on the back of an improved performance in its sport betting arm.

FTSE 100 biggest risers

BAE Systems +18.50 (3.74%) 512.50p

Kingfisher +10.30 (+3.14%) 338.00p

Worldpay Group +5.60 (+1.84%) 309.80p

Imperial Tobacco Group +63.50 (+1.79%) 3,602.50p

National Grid +16.70 (+1.79%) 950.00p

FTSE 100 biggest fallers

BHP Billiton -36.60 (-4.91%) 709.40p

Rio Tinto -93.00 (-4.80%) 1,846.50p

Anglo American -12.80 (-4.52%) 270.40p

Sports Direct International -19.00 (-3.44%) 533.00p

Standard Chartered -16.70 (-3.14%) 515.60p