U.K. Stocks Decline for Third Day; Admiral, Aviva Slide

U.K. stocks dropped, with the benchmark FTSE 100 Index posting its biggest three-day slump since March, as insurers led the losses.

Admiral Group Plc fell 3.3 percent after the car insurer announced a drop in margin expectations for business earned this year. Aviva Plc slid 3.6 percent after Shore Capital Group Ltd. said the company’s targets are not challenging. Provident Financial Plc slipped 2 percent after Berenberg Bank downgraded the shares. EasyJet Plc climbed 3.1 percent, rebounding from its biggest two-day loss since May.

The FTSE 100 slid 20.41 points, or 0.3 percent, to 6,718.04 at the close of trading in London, taking its three-day decline to 2.2 percent. The broader FTSE All-Share Index fell 0.4 percent today, while Ireland’s ISEQ Index added 0.3 percent.

Admiral lost 3.3 percent to 1,522 pence. The car insurer also said expectations for its U.K. business remain unchanged for this year.

Aviva fell 3.6 percent to 493.9 pence. Chief Executive Officer Mark Wilson said the U.K.’s second-biggest insurer will focus on a smaller number of markets and will continue cutting costs. Shore cited disappointing de-leveraging targets.

Prudential, the U.K.’s largest insurer, dropped 0.6 percent to 1,371.5 pence.

Provident Financial retreated 2 percent to 2,156 pence after Berenberg downgraded the shares to hold from buy. The brokerage recommended taking profit after this year’s 35 percent rally through yesterday, citing few catalysts for the near term.

EasyJet rose 3.1 percent to 1,287 pence. The stock slumped 8.3 percent in the past two days. UBS AG said Europe’s second-largest discount airline will probably raise its forecasts when it reports quarterly earnings.