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BUSINESS CLOSE: Housebuilders dent FTSE as they face £4bn cladding bill; Bitcoin drops below $40k; Plus500 expects forecast-beating results










Housebuilding companies helped drag the FTSE lower today after the UK Government told them to come up with a fully-funded plan to remove dangerous cladding from residential housing, a project that could cost at least £4billion.

The FTSE 100 has ended the day down 0.5 per cent at 7,445.3, while the FTSE 250 closed down 1.5 per cent at 23,001.8. 

In the US, stocks were nursing heavy losses as expectations of rate hikes this year worried investors, with all main indexes down more than 1 per cent just after London market close. 

Secretary of State for Levelling Up Michael Gove said that property developers had until early March to agree a plan to deal with cladding on buildings that are between 11 and 18 metres high.

In company news, online trading platform Plus500 expects its annual results to exceed market expectations even as it reported a slower fourth-quarter growth as compared with the previous quarter on weak customer trading performance.

Elsewhere, bitcoin briefly dropped below $40,000 today to its lowest in over five months as volatility continues.

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Secretary of State for Levelling Up Michael Gove told housebuilders to pay to sort out unsafe cladding on 11-18m buildings, currently estimated to be £4billion

Secretary of State for Levelling Up Michael Gove told housebuilders to pay to sort out unsafe cladding on 11-18m buildings, currently estimated to be £4billion

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