Tuesday 12 December 2017

ISEQ gets manufacturing boost

Colm Kelpie

Colm Kelpie

IRISH shares increased yesterday as new data showed manufacturing here expanded at its fastest pace in nine months in August.

Stocks climbed around the world and copper rallied as manufacturing in China and Europe expanded and the prospects of an imminent strike on Syria faded.

By the close in Dublin, the ISEQ Overall Index climbed 1.4pc or 58.52 points to end the day at 4,248.69.

The index increased on opening and continued to rise at a steady pace throughout the day.

The gains came amid positive data for the manufacturing sector both in Ireland and across the eurozone. China, the world's second-biggest economy, also showed signs that its slowdown may be tapering.

The leaders in Dublin included drug company Elan, which increased 3.1pc to close at €11.80, while airline Ryanair was up 2.6pc to €6.78.

Packaging giant Smurfit Kappa was up 2.3pc to €15.73 while building materials firm CRH closed up 1.6pc to €16.28.

On the other side of the board, insurance giant FBD fell 1.4pc to €15.19, while Aer Lingus was down 0.9pc to €1.68.

Speciality baker Aryzta closed down 0.1pc to €48.15, and AIB, ahead of the appearance of its CEO David Duffy before the Oireachtas Finance Committee today, fell 2.9pc to €0.07.

Elsewhere, the major EU stocks were up on the back of the positive manufacturing data.

The Stoxx 600 jumped 1.8pc, the most in eight weeks.

The UK's FTSE jumped 1.5pc, while France's CAC 40 was up 1.6pc by late afternoon and Germany's DAX increased 1.7pc.

Mining shares featured among the top gainers, with Rio Tinto up 4.7pc and Anglo American up 4pc.

Bullish data also came from Europe, with British manufacturing accelerating again in August while eurozone factory activity expanded at its fastest pace in over two years.

"Data shows that things are finally moving in Europe. Even though economic growth is partially driven by rising public spending, it's creating the conditions for a pickup in corporate investment," said Patrick Legland, head of research at Societe Generale. (Additional reporting Reuters)

Irish Independent

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