Source - SMW
UK stocks opened weaker on Friday as rising global bond yields sparked concerns about interest rates and AstraZeneca and BT released disappointing earnings results. 

At 0857, the benchmark FTSE 100 index was down 6.49 points, or 0.1%, at 7,483.90.

AstraZeneca shed 3.9% after the drugs giant booked a 25% drop in annual operating profit amid falling revenues.

BT Group gave up 3.5% after its third-quarter earnings and revenue tracked lower, owing to increased investments in its mobile offering and higher pension costs.

Ryanair had better news, stating that its passenger volumes grew by 6% in January on-year to 9.3m, while its load factor also increased. The budget carrier's shares gained 0.4%.

Wood Group rallied 4.6% after the engineer said US tax changes would provide a one-off boost and help it over the longer term, too.

National Grid, however, said that although it expected to book a one-off gain related to the US headline corporate tax cut, the overall policy would likely have a neutral impact on the company longer term. The utility's shares eased back 0.2%.

Troubled sub-prime lender Provident Financial Group said it had appointed Malcolm Le May as its new chief executive following a months-long selection process. Its shares gained 1.1%.

Vedanta Resources added 1.1% after the Inida-focused miner boosted earnings in its fiscal third quarter by 21% on-year, as production volumes and commodity prices both rose.

Wealth manager Hargreaves Lansdown said it had appointed Deanna Oppenheimer as its new chairman. The group's shares softened by 0.2%. 

Real estate agency Purplebricks Group contested the findings of a research report by broker Jefferies that was issued subsequent to a large fall in its share price. Its protestations didn't help, with the shares falling another 3.6%.