By Shashwat Awasthi and Muvija M
(Reuters) - British bluechips shed early gains on Friday as a slide in banks overshadowed a rise in airlines amid fears of a rate cut.
Both the benchmarks missed out on a Wall Street frenzy that took all three U.S. indexes to all-time highs despite weak jobs data for December.
The FTSE 100 ended 0.1% lower after trading most of the session in positive territory.
An index of bank stocks gave up 1%, led by a 2.5% drop in Lloyds, after Bank of England policymaker Silvana Tenreyro joined the central bank's head Mark Carney in leaning towards lowering interest rates if growth does not improve.
But a near 5% gain for British Airways owner IAG and a 4.2% rise in easyJet limited losses.
Irish carrier Ryanair's London-listed shares jumped 6% to their highest since June 2018 after reporting a better-than-expected performance during the Christmas and New Year travel period.
The FTSE 250 dipped 0.4% to its lowest in over three weeks, with retailer B&M falling 6% on slowing sales growth in the Christmas quarter and Watches of Switzerland losing 4% following a discounted share sale.
Aston Martin outshone the index, leaping 15.3% on its best day since early December after a report that China’s Geely Automobile Holding was in talks about taking a stake.
Once again, most retailers came under pressure.
Superdry slipped 7% to its lowest in over a year as sales during the peak holiday period fell short of its expectations.
Joules Group tanked 21% to a life low after a profit warning due to a shortage of merchandise during the Christmas period.
It has been a rollercoaster ride for the retail sector as companies issue updates on holiday trading.
Morrisons and Tesco gave better-than-feared numbers, but Sainsbury's and Marks & Spencer have not matched up to market expectations, which led to a share slump in both stocks this week.
With a Brexit showdown in the form of a general election last month interrupting the holiday season and consumer sentiment remaining overall weak, smaller retailers have borne the brunt of High Street challenges.
Another notable loser on the FTSE 100 was packaging firm Mondi, which dropped 2% after announcing the departure of its top boss Peter Oswald after nearly three years in the role.
(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi and Muvija M in Bengaluru, additional reporting by Tanishaa Nadkar; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Nick Macfie)