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UK financial sector drags the FTSE 100 to six-year low

The ongoing concern about the UK economy and the worldwide economy, together with the drastic quantitative easing policy introduced by the UK authorities today, has caused turmoil across the financial sector. Insurance companies and UK banks have been under pressure with Barclays Bank alone falling by over 20% in today's dealing session. So why have the banks and insurance companies been hit?

There is further concern regarding the financial backing for insurance companies and banks in the UK with the potential for insurance company assets (i.e. stock market and property investments in the main) to fall further and UK banks to announce larger than expected impairment charges. The ever-changing UK economic scenario has prompted a number of leading analysts in the city to downgrade the likes of Barclays Bank with suggestions that write-offs could be anything up to £13 billion as opposed to the maximum £8 billion indicated by the company just a few days ago.

The financial sector has been very volatile of late with a number of false dawns causing increased confusion amongst investors. As the economic situation continues to worsen and analysts appear to be reducing their price forecasts in the short to medium term it would appear the UK financial sector could be in for a very bumpy ride.

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