Saturday 20 October 2018

European stocks reverse trajectory and head higher for weekend

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

European stocks edged higher yesterday after Thursday's declines, boosted by earnings reports from companies including luxury goods group LVMH.

But US economic growth unexpectedly slowed in the fourth quarter as the strongest pace of consumer spending in three years resulted in a surge in imports.

Its gross domestic product increased at a 2.6pc annual rate, held back in part by a modest pace of inventory accumulation, the US Commerce Department said in its advance fourth-quarter GDP report.

The US economy grew at a 3.2pc pace in the third quarter. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the economy expanding at a 3pc pace in the final three months of 2017.

A measure of domestic demand jumped at a 4.6pc rate, the fastest since the third quarter of 2014, underscoring the economy's strength. Final sales to private domestic purchasers rose at a 2.2pc pace in third quarter.

In Ireland, the ISEQ Overall Index ended yesterday's session 0.9pc higher at 7.098.63, having fallen 1.7pc on Thursday.

Shares in Swiss-Irish food firm Aryzta, which has a secondary listing in Dublin, were in the spotlight again. They tumbled 8.8pc in Switzerland, having slumped more than 20pc on Thursday following a profit warning. The shares were downgraded by some analysts yesterday.

Ryanair advanced 2.7pc to €16.74, while Bulmers maker C&C was up almost 3pc at €3.13.

The UK's FTSE 100 was up 0.65pc, while Germany's DAX was up 0.31pc.

Reuters

Irish Independent

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