5 Worst-Performing FTSE 100 Stocks in 2018

The FTSE 100 has suffered from numerous troubles in 2018 - hit by trade and political uncertainty. We round up the worst performers

David Brenchley 28 December, 2018 | 7:35AM
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British American Tobacco cigarette smoking ashtray

It has been a testing year for global stock markets, with trade concerns and political uncertainty plaguing equities. The FTSE 100 has been double hit, with the blue-chip index dominated by overseas earners and domestic equities threatened by Brexit.

Below, we pick out those that fared worst in 2018 on a total return basis according to Morningstar Direct data.

5 Worst-Performing FTSE 100 Stocks

Cigarette makers around the world have struggled this year, with the regulatory crackdown on tobacco-based products continuing apace. UK income stalwarts Imperial Brands (IMB) and British American Tobacco (BATS) have seen big share price falls.

The latter in particular has felt the force of investors’ wrath thanks to its large presence in the US through its acquisition of Reynolds. Shares have almost halved year-to-date, with a total loss of 46.2%.

Asset manager Standard Life Aberdeen (SLA) has also struggled and has lost 44.5%, as investors pondered whether the firm’s decision to focus on asset management rather than insurance was the right thing to do, says Mould.

Further, the suite of funds run by Aberdeen in particular is very emerging market-focused, so performance has been held back; while outflows from Standard Life’s GARS product don’t look like abating.

The damage for software developer Micro Focus (MCRO) was done in the first quarter of the year. A 10-year winning streak was brought to an end with a damaging profits warning and the resignation of its chief executive. Chief financial officer Chris Kennedy also quit for ITV (ITV).

It’s recovered since, after a November trading update that reported an “improved revenue trajectory”, but shares are down 43.5% on the year. Still, broker UBS is hopeful, with a ‘buy’ rating and potential 42% upside on the stock.

The combination of a 14% year-to-date decline in the silver price and the election of populist left-leaning President Andres Manual Lopez Obrador (AMLO) in Mexico has hit miner Fresnillo (FRES), which has lost 39%.

AMLO has launched a review of Mexico’s tax and regulatory treatment of the mining sector, says Mould, leading investors to worry about the impact on companies exploring in the country.

Finally, B&Q and Screwfix owner Kingfisher (KGF) continues to decline, with a loss of 36% in 2018 to date adding to losses that have been going on for the past four years, which have seen shares plunge by half.

Shares currently trade at an eight-year low as its French business, Castorama, struggles. Its decision to pull out of markets in Russia, Spain and Portugal failed to allay investors’ fears and its five-year ONE Kingfisher transformation plan hasn’t helped profits recover at the halfway point, says UBS analyst Andrew Hughes.

The information contained within is for educational and informational purposes ONLY. It is not intended nor should it be considered an invitation or inducement to buy or sell a security or securities noted within nor should it be viewed as a communication intended to persuade or incite you to buy or sell security or securities noted within. Any commentary provided is the opinion of the author and should not be considered a personalised recommendation. The information contained within should not be a person's sole basis for making an investment decision. Please contact your financial professional before making an investment decision.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
AstraZeneca PLC10,684.00 GBP0.00Rating
British American Tobacco PLC3,346.00 GBP0.00Rating
EdenTree Responsible and Sust UK Eq B229.31 GBP-0.69Rating
EVRAZ PLC81.00 GBP0.00
Fresnillo PLC782.00 GBP0.00
GlaxoSmithKline PLC1,794.80 GBP0.00Rating
Imperial Brands PLC1,671.50 GBP0.00Rating
ITV PLC74.60 GBP0.00
Kingfisher PLC254.30 GBP0.00Rating
Micro Focus International PLC399.20 GBP0.00
Ocado Group PLC919.40 GBP0.00Rating
Pearson PLC789.40 GBP0.00Rating
Pfizer Inc49.29 USD0.00Rating
Standard Life Aberdeen PLC188.90 GBP0.00
The Kroger Co54.79 USD0.00Rating

About Author

David Brenchley

David Brenchley  is a Reporter for Morningstar.co.uk