Thursday 23 November 2017

Aer Lingus owner shares bounce on higher core earnings target

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York. Photo: Reuters
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York. Photo: Reuters
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

Aer Lingus owner IAG said it was aiming for annual core earnings around 20pc higher than previous targets yesterday as it stuck to its goals for earning-per-share growth and margins for the coming years.

IAG shares fell 1.8pc, reversing earlier gains. The company, which also owns British Airways and Iberia, among others, is aiming for annual core earnings around 20pc higher than previous targets as it stuck to its goals for earnings-per-share growth and margins for the coming years.

British shares hit a record closing high yesterday, supported by a rally in global stocks and the Bank of England's interest rate hike, which helped British exporters by putting pressure on sterling.

The exporter-heavy FTSE 100 index peaked at 7580.95 - 18 points short of June's all-time intraday record - and ended 0.1pc higher on the day at a 7,560.35, for a 0.7pc gain on the week.

"Yesterday's sharp fall in sterling on the BoE's dovish hike was the catalyst for fresh gains as, once again, we saw a weaker pound a reason to bid up UK equities," ETX Capital analyst Neil Wilson said yesterday.

Sterling came under renewed pressure yesterday but strengthened slightly after data showed that the services sector enjoyed a sharp pick-up in growth last month, although companies were nervous about Brexit.

Among the big internationally-exposed FTSE companies, Diageo was the biggest gainer, rising 0.9pc and close to its all-time high, while Experian and Compass Group added 1.6pc and 0.8pc respectively. European shares crept higher yeserday, with new records hit in London and Frankfurt, though earnings from French bank Société Générale and Dutch telecoms group Altice weighed on their sectors and limited gains.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index was up 0.3pc, Germany's DAX hit a new high, and in Dublin the Iseq was up 0.27pc at 6,984.30.

Additional reporting by Reuters

Irish Independent

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