Commercial property stocks were hit by profit-taking in yesterday's trading. British Land's fell by 3.5% to £11.98 while Land Securities', which rose by 4.1% last week, slipped 1.9% to £17.28.

Erinaceous’s shares fell 12.3% to 139p on news that HBOS had abandoned its bid for the property services company.

Erinaceous is still in talks with several potential bidders, but traders are sceptical about an offer emerging.