Tuesday 23 January 2018

Little change on shares as financials grab spotlight

Peter Flanagan

IRISH shares had another day of little change, with little movement either way for most major stocks.

By the close, the ISEQ Overall Index was up 0.36pc, or 10.48 points, at 2,950.17.

The index was down marginally on the week, having opened on Monday at 2,965.12. Traders bought early yesterday and kept buying, forcing the index into positive territory from early in the day.

Irish Life and Permanent led the market in percentage terms, closing up 14.86pc at 17c. The financials closed the week as they had opened it -- as the centre of attention. Allied Irish Bank slipped 2.08pc to 24c while Bank of Ireland lost 4.3pc to close at 27c.

Most commodity players found favour with investors. Petroceltic climbed 8.7pc to 13c while Petroneft added 5.88pc to 63c.

Aminex jumped 6.11pc to 10c while Kenmare Resources was essentially unchanged.

Once again the food sector was one of the big gainers on the day.

Kerry Group climbed 1.63pc to €27.50 on the back of a favourable report from Merrion Stockbrokers while Glanbia surged 3.82pc to €4.54.

Outside Ireland, European stocks climbed for the second time in three days, boosted by results at companies from Nestle to Syngenta and a better-than-forecast US consumer confidence report.


National benchmark indexes fell in 11 of the 18 western European benchmark markets. The UK's FTSE 100 Index rose 0.5pc, while Germany's DAX Index advanced 0.4pc. France's CAC 40 Index gained 0.1pc. The benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 Index slid 1.4pc.

Commerzbank plummeted 16pc, the largest weekly decline in almost two years. Germany's second-biggest lender raised €4.3bn from selling conditional mandatory exchangeable notes. Germany's bank-rescue fund, Soffin, will convert €1.4bn of silent participations, a form of non-voting capital, into shares to maintain its stake at 25pc plus one share.

National Bank of Greece, Alpha Bank, Piraeus Bank and EFG Eurobank Ergasias all lost more than 8pc.

The yield on Greece's 10-year bond climbed above 13pc for the first time since at least 1998 this week as German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said the beleaguered Mediterranean country may need to restructure its debt.

Irish Independent

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