Sunday 22 April 2018

European markets showing resilience

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

London's FTSE 100 rose by 0.6pc yesterday after it emerged that issuances of sterling-denominated UK corporate bonds has risen nearly 15-fold ahead of the Bank of England(BoE) including them in its bond-buying stimulus programme designed to stave off a Brexit-led slowdown, according to Thomson Reuters data.

The UK corporate bond universe is small compared to other developed corporate bond markets, particularly the United States, but firms have ramped up issuance before the BoE's planned entry into the market next month.

In France, the CAC rose by 0.7pc as the private sector shrugged off its neighbour's vote and accelerated to levels last seen just before the attacks in Paris in November, as an upturn in the service sector offset continued weakness in manufacturing.

Markit's flash composite Purchasing Managers' Index for the Eurozone edged up to a seven-month high of 53.3 from July's 53.2, where any reading above 50 indicates growth. A Reuters poll of economists had predicted a dip to 53.1.

In Dublin, the ISEQ overall index of Irish shares rose by 49.62 points, or 0.82pc, to close at 6,113.70.

Shares in Merrion Pharmaceuticals soared after the company announced plans to liquidate itself yesterday, with a windfall of €4.5m set to be divided up among remaining shareholders.

Bank of Ireland shares had gains of 3.9pc, while Independent News and Media stocks rose by 2.9pc. First Derivatives shares were up 3.1pc, while building materials firm Kingspan continued its strong performance this week with gains of 3.5pc. Overall, stocks were held back by losses in the mining sector which contracted after two days of gains, while Ryanair lost 0.8pc.


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