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CRH leads the way with 7pc rise

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Stock market analysis

Stock market analysis

Stock market analysis

SHARES in global building materials group CRH rose by more than 7pc to almost €22 yesterday, as it revealed its full-year results.

CRH's delivery of €1.47bn in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) last year made it the biggest mover of the day in Dublin. The ISEQ Overall Index climbed almost 2pc to close at 5,150.66.

Other leaders were AIB, which closed up 4pc meaning it now has a market capital of €78bn, while Permanent TSB increased by 3.6pc.

Laggers included Shannon-headquartered mining group Mincon Group, down 2.35pc to €1.04 and oil firm Petroceltic, down 1.4pc to €2.

European stocks were little changed, paring earlier losses in the last hour of trading and closing at its highest level since January 2008.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gained less than 0.1pc to 338.39 at the close of trading in London after earlier falling as much as 0.5pc.

The gauge has advanced 4.9pc this month, following a 1.8pc decline in January, as Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen pledged to continue her predecessor's stimulus policies to support the US economy.

"Stocks are left vulnerable for pullbacks," said Witold Bahrke, of PFA Asset Management in Copenhagen. "Risk is more biased to the downside now as we are approaching new highs."

In the US, stocks fluctuated after the Standard & Poor's 500 Index set an intra-day record on Monday and treasuries rose as a report showed consumer confidence weakened.

Some 68pc of S&P 500 companies traded above their average prices from the past 50 days, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

In the UK, stocks fell from their highest level in 14 years as a gauge of commodity producers declined and companies, including Ashmore Group Plc, posted disappointing financial results.

Rio Tinto Group slipped 2.8pc, leading London-listed mining stocks lower, as iron ore and copper prices dropped. The FTSE 100 Index retreated 35.36 points, or 0.5pc, to 6,830.5 at the close of trading in London, halting a seven-day winning streak that brought it to within 1pc of its December 1999 record.

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