Saturday 21 April 2018

Food companies feed ISEQ shares surge

IRISH shares rose yesterday, as drinks manufacturer C&C and food supplier Kerry Group issued interim results. The ISEQ Overall Index was up 14.40 points or 0.33pc to 4330.86 by late afternoon.

C&C saw strong gains, rising 3pc by 3pm to €4.11, after the maker of Bulmers cider released half-year results which showed a jump in sales of 28pc.

It was a good day for food companies. Kerry Group gained 1pc to €46.84 after reporting a robust quarterly performance with business volumes up 2.3pc between July and September. Fresh food supplier Total Produce saw the second highest percentage gains of the day, up 4pc to 84c, while fruit company Fyffes added 1pc to 80c.

Both of the country's largest airlines rose, with Aer Lingus gaining 1pc to €1.44 and Ryanair adding 1pc to €6.13. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Kenmare Resources slipped 4pc to 23c. Permanent TSB followed, shedding 4pc to 4c.

In Europe, stocks erased earlier gains in afternoon trading, leaving the benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 Index little changed near a five-year high, as telecommun-ications companies fell and the US Federal Reserve met for a second day to discuss monetary policy.

National benchmark indexes dropped in 11 of the 18 Western-European markets. The UK's FTSE 100 increased 0.1pc, while France's CAC 40 slipped 0.2pc. Germany's DAX Index lost 0.1pc after closing at a record yesterday.

The Stoxx 600 barely budged from a five-year high, declining less than 0.1pc to 320.73 at 2.15pm in London after erasing a gain of as much as 0.7pc as food and beverage stocks extended losses.

As a sector, carmakers posted the best performance of the 19 industry groups in the composite index, rising 1.2pc. Porsche climbed 4.5pc to €66.99 and Continental gained 2.1pc to €133.90.

"Everything is super bullish," said London-based portfolio manager Nicola Marinelli. "Whether it's good numbers or bad numbers, good news or bad news, they are all interpreted in the same way."

In the UK, Barclays advanced 2.5pc after posting a third-quarter pretax profit that met estimates.

Sarah McCabe

Irish Independent

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