U.K. Homebuilders Stumble Over Worries About Loss of 'Help-to-Buy' Program

Shares of U.K. homebuilders were sent tumbling on Friday when a British real estate magazine reported the government could cancel its program to help first-time buyers onto the property ladder. The FTSE 350 Household Goods & Home Construction Index fell as much as 2 percent on the news, and with Reckitt Benckiser stripped out of the gauge -- the company is a large household goods supplier -- the declines were even more pronounced. Investors were only partially reassured by a government statement that the program’s review does not mean its cancellation.

— With assistance by Sharon R Smyth, and Jack Sidders

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