Large gains on day of heavy buying
Published 25/03/2011 | 05:00
IRISH shares jumped yesterday, as Dublin joined in a day of heavy buying across the continent.
By the close of trading the ISEQ Overall Index had gained 1.92pc, or 53.89 points, to close at 2,867.17. Traders started buying early on and didn't stop until the closing bell as the index regained much of the losses sustained over the past week.
Gains were driven mainly by buying among commodity companies and CRH.
The construction giant, which makes up about a third of the index, added 3.28pc to reach €16.20. The move followed internal transactions in its shares and the news that jobless claims in the US fell last week.
That gain on its own would nearly have been enough for the ISEQ to finish the day in positive territory anyway, but commodity stocks posted large gains on a day when gold hit a new high in New York before falling back.
Dragon Oil stormed ahead, adding 7.57pc to €6.76 while Providence Resources increased 1.59pc.
Miners Kenmare Resources and Ormonde Mining put on 10.86pc and 4.43pc respectively.
The banks fluctuated throughout the day but were little changed by the closing bell.
Elsewhere, national benchmark indexes rose in all of the 18 western European markets as carmakers and retailers rallied and Portugal's prime minister resigned, bringing the country closer to getting an EU bailout.
France's CAC 40 Index advanced 1.4pc, the UK's FTSE 100 Index increased 1.5pc and Germany's DAX Index rose 1.9pc. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gained 1pc.
"Portugal will be the third member to join the rescue fund, but this was already expected by the market," said Robert Halver, head of research at Baader Bank in Frankfurt. "There's still a lot of liquidity and the market can go higher."
BMW and Daimler, the world's largest makers of luxury cars, surged 4.2pc and 3.5pc respectively. European carmakers posted the best performance among 19 industry groups in the Stoxx 600, climbing 3.2pc.
BHP Billiton, the world's biggest mining company, advanced 1.4pc and Rio Tinto, the third-largest miner, gained 2.5pc. The companies won their second mining-tax battle in Australia after the government agreed to allow them to credit future state royalties imposts against a planned 30pc levy on their profits. Xstrata rose 1.6pc.
Next jumped 4pc after the UK's second-biggest clothing retailer said full-year revenue rose to £3.45bn (€3.9bn). The Leicester-based company also posted pre-tax profit that climbed 9pc to £551m (€176m), beating estimates.
Luxury clothier Hugo Boss increased 1.7pc as BofA Merrill Lynch initiated coverage of the stock with a "buy" rating.
Premier Oil advanced 4pc as the UK oil and gas producer said profit rose 15pc.