Thursday 23 November 2017

Big deals lift Wall St as Opec move hits oil

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

It was a mixed bag for European bourses yesterday, with Wall Street higher on several big deals and Spain's IBEX index rising. Oil prices fell after Iraq said it wanted to be exempt from an Opec deal to cut production.

Merger and acquisition activity spurred Wall Street, headed by Saturday's announcement by telecoms company AT&T that it plans to buy Time Warner for $85.4bn in what would be the biggest deal in the world this year if approved by regulators.

"The deal activity suggests that companies are feeling positive about the prospects of the economy and that is encouraging," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial.

Iraqi oil minister Jabar Ali al-Luaibi said Baghdad wants to be exempt from any production cut the Opec is aiming to achieve.

In Ireland, the Iseq Overall Index slipped 0.1pc to finish the session at 6,035.26.

A 1.6pc gain by Bank of Ireland, which closed at 19 cent, was offset by a 3.4pc decline in Glanbia, which finished at €14.97.

Smurfit Kappa also fell, shedding 1.7pc to €20.30 after Davy Stockbrokers pointed to challenging headwinds for the packaging giant. Davy said the decline in sterling will impact its forecasts for the group.

Drinks maker C&C, which issues interim results on Thursday, rose 2.4pc.

The UK's FTSE-100 was 0.5pc lower, while Germany's DAX rose 0.5pc. France's CAC-40 was up 0.36pc.

The blue-chip FTSE-100 is up around 13pc since the start of 2016, but down by around 7pc in US dollar terms, due to a slump in sterling.


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