A volatile week

It has been a tense week for investors as international markets were hit hard by fears of rising inflation and interest rates in the US.

Last week, the FTSE 100 fell more than 600 points below last month's high of 6137, wiping out almost 10% of its value, with Thursday seeing the biggest single fall in more than three years.

In the insurance sector, stocks were hit across the board. Royal & SunAlliance (R&SA) fell over 9% before clawing back a few points to trade at 126p on Tuesday.

R&SA is being sued for an estimated $1bn by GM in a US personal injury claims dispute linked to asbestos.

Meanwhile, shares in Highway Insurance searched for direction in volatile trading. As Insurance Times went to press they were 1% up at 68.75p. Shares have fallen over 20% since a statement from Highway to its AGM on 10 May when the company cautioned that cost and price pressures were pushing up its combined ratio.

Shares in the Novae Group, which began trading this week, were changing hands at 29p on Tuesday.