Business Irish

Saturday 17 February 2018

European markets end day in the red

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange

Reuters

European stocks got off to a sluggish start on Monday following two weeks of gains, with cyclical stocks among the biggest decliners, while mergers and acquisitions remained in focus.

By the end of the session, most European bourses were in the red.

Shares in some competitors of UK construction and services giant Carillion rose after the long-struggling construction and support services company collapsed, with banks refusing to lend it any more money.

"People will pick up business and for some it will be good. JV arrangements will also get triggered where they take on the majority share of the contracts," said a sector analyst at a UK broker, citing Serco in healthcare.

While the STOXX has seen a strong start to 2018 and has held at its highest levels since August 2015, weakness among banking stocks and energy kept the index in negative territory, while a stronger euro also added pressure.

The Euro Stoxx 50 was flat yesterday.

"European equities have been on a tear since the beginning of 2018, and we were due some form of a pullback," said Jonathan Roy, market strategist at Ocean Capital Group.

In Ireland, the ISEQ Overall Index bucked the wider trend yesterday, ending the day 0.26pc higher at 7.092.67.

Shares in Bulmers maker C&C rose 1.4pc to €2.92, while Kerry Group was up almost 1.2pc at €89.69.

Decliners included travel software firm Datalex, which shed 2.5pc to €3.12.

Fruit and vegetable distributor Total Produce was 2pc lower at €2.37.

The UK's FTSE-100 ended yesterday's session 0.1pc lower. Germany's DAX was down 0.34pc and France's CAC-40 lost 0.1pc.

Irish Independent

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