Sunday 18 March 2018

Ryanair helps push Iseq above 6,000

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

Gavin McLoughlin

The Iseq index of Irish shares soared almost 2pc yesterday, fuelled by a strong day for the heavily weighted Ryanair stock.

The index closed above the 6,000-point mark for the first time since October 24, ending at 6,029.76 - a 1.87pc rise on the day.

Ryanair rose 5.26pc after posting a 7pc profit increase for the first half of its financial year, despite the Brexit vote and a number of terrorist incidents in Europe. FBD Holdings rose more than 4pc.

On the other side of the board, it was a difficult day for minerals explorers. Ormonde Mining, Ovoca Gold and Kenmare Resources were the worst performers on the exchange, losing 9pc, 4.5pc and 3pc respectively, in contrast with the performance of European peers.

Elsewhere, a HSBC-led rally in lenders and the FBI's exoneration of Hillary Clinton's email usage propelled a rebound in European shares after their worst week since February.

HSBC climbed more than 4.5pc after posting a surprise jump in adjusted profit. A regulatory decision also boosted its key capital ratio.

"European markets are bouncing following the FBI news," said Jacques Porta, at Ofi Patrimoine Gestion Privee in Paris.

"This comes as a confirmation that markets are pro-Clinton. This helps catch up on some of the weakness seen lately but caution is very much on the agenda as nothing is certain."

The Stoxx 600 is still trading close to a four-month low amid investor scepticism toward the region. Brexit, as well as ongoing worries about the strength of the economic recovery and the willingness of central banks to maintain accommodative monetary policies, have hurt sentiment since the equity gauge reached a four-month high in September.

Additional reporting by Bloomberg

Irish Independent

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