Sunday 25 February 2018

ISEQ slumps as global markets routed

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

Paul O'Donoghue

Low cost airline Ryanair led the decliners on the Irish Stock Exchange yesterday as the worst start to a year in global stocks since 2000 extended to a fourth day, with turmoil emanating from China spreading around the world.

By the close of business the ISEQ had dropped by 123.38 points to 6,563.78, with almost all stocks falling in value.

Risers on the exchange included nutrition and ingredients giant Glanbia, which rose by 2.17pc to €17.15 a share while hotel group Dalata was up by 1.29pc to €5.25 following reports of a record year in Irish hotel sales. Food firms Fyffes and Kerry Group also saw modest increases in their share price.

Many more companies closed the day as laggards. Despite announcing yesterday that it carried over 100m passengers last year, Ryanair recorded the sharpest fall of any firm on the exchange, with shares dropping by almost 4pc to €14.74. Swiss-Irish food company Aryzta was down by 3.58pc to €43.15 while building giant CRH sank by 2.78pc to €25.05.

Fresh concern that China's slowdown will hamper global growth has wiped $2.5tn off the value of global equities this year, as the nation's tolerance for a weaker currency is viewed as evidence policy makers are struggling to revive an economy that's the world's biggest user of resources. The Shanghai Composite Index tumbled 7.3pc before trading was suspended as the Hang Seng China Enterprises gauge of mainland shares listed in Hong Kong tumbled by 4.2pc.

The Standard & Poor's 500 slid 1.5pc by mid-afternoon in New York and is down 4pc this year. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slid 2.2pc. The rout this year in Europe surpassed 5pc, as Germany's DAX fell below 10,000 for the first time since October. Benchmark indexes in Australia, Japan and Singapore all lost more than 2pc.

Additional reporting by Bloomberg

Irish Independent

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