Tough week ends with slight gain amid positive US data
IRISH shares were little changed yesterday, as traders took a breather after a tumultuous week and stronger-than-expected data from the US lifted the market.
The ISEQ Overall Index closed up 0.3pc, or 7.96 points, at 2,669.7. For the week, it was down 3.33pc having opened on Monday at 2,756.12.
The market was buoyed by CRH, which rounded off a bad week with a small gain, and food stocks.
CRH increased 0.37pc to €12.10 after the US, where the building materials company conducts much of its business, said the economy grew by 1.6pc, ahead of expectations.
Traders continued to take a second look at the stock, which fell 17pc on Tuesday after posting poor results.
Food and beverage stocks also finished the day in positive territory. Cider maker C&C added 0.78pc after data showed cider sales may be stabilising, while Glanbia grew 0.32pc to €3.43 on continued positive sentiment following its results on Wednesday.
Donegal Creameries grabbed 0.41pc to close at €3 while Kerry Group, which reports half-year results on Tuesday, ended the day up 0.41pc at €24.75.
Few stocks struggled, but the exploration company Tullow Oil continued to lose value, slipping 4.69pc to €14.63 after local press reports in Uganda suggested the government there had cancelled one of Tullow's licences in the lucrative Lake Albert region.
The stock has plunged nearly 10pc since Tuesday amid continuing problems in its Ugandan operations.
The slight gain posted in Dublin was reflected across the rest of western Europe. National benchmark indexes rose in 15 out of 18 markets after the positive US data and news that the US "will do all that it can" to ensure a continuation of the economic recovery.
The composite Stoxx 600 rose 0.6pc, France's CAC 40 gained 0.9pc and Germany's DAX advanced 0.7pc.
The UK's FTSE 100 rose 0.9pc as a report showed the British economy expanded faster than previously estimated in the second quarter.
"This is just the kind of good data we needed after so many days with bad news from the US," said Peter Braendle, a fund manager at Swisscanto Asset Management in Zurich.
Telecoms stocks led the way in London. Cable & Wireless gained 5.7pc, Vodafone advanced 2.8pc and BT rose by 2.8pc.