Saturday 25 November 2017

ISEQ on positive run with seventh daily gain

Peter Flanagan

Peter Flanagan

IRISH shares rose again yesterday as the Dublin market continued to enjoy the afterglow of last week's tentative deal on reducing the country's debt burden.

By the close of trading the ISEQ Overall Index had risen 0.9pc, or 29.1 points, to close at 3,218.39.

The index was on an upward trend for most of the day, and peaked at closing. The index has now risen for seven straight sessions, only the third such run since September 2009.

Gains were spread across a wide array of sectors, with the food sector in particular enjoying a strong session.

In percentage terms, Fyffes was one of the big winners. The fruit distributor jumped 4.9pc to 43c. Kerry Group advanced 1.7pc to close at €34.08.

The company bounced back from Tuesday's reduction by Investec, who cut their rating on the company to "hold" from "buy".

Glanbia headed back towards the top end of its 52-week range, adding 0.3pc to close at €6.02.

The company has been buoyed by expectations that it may be able to spin off the low margin milk processing business and concentrate on the more profitable nutritionals side of the house.

The commodities sector had a mixed day, however, as prices continued to slide. Petroceltic slid 4.5pc, while Kenmare Resources lost 1.2pc.

Elsewhere, European stocks were little changed as speculation that central banks will ease monetary policy offset service-industry measures in the UK and Germany that missed economists' forecasts.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slipped less than 0.1pc as national benchmark indices fell in 10 of the 18 western European markets.

Germany's DAX slipped 0.2pc, while France's CAC 40 and the UK's FTSE 100 each lost 0.1pc each.

"Seeing equities fall back after a 7pc rise as a result of the summit meeting last week suggests that common sense is returning to the market," said Henrik Drusebjerg, a strategist at Nordea Bank in Copenhagen.

"If investors are hoping that tomorrow's central bank meetings will see initiatives on top of lowering interest rates, they will be disappointed."

Man Group, the world's largest publicly traded hedge fund, lost 4.7pc to hit its lowest price since October 1999 as the net asset value of one of its flagship funds decreased 2.5pc last week.

EON dropped 1.6pc after analysts downgraded the shares. Germany's biggest utility was cut to neutral from overweight at JPMorgan, while Citigroup reduced its recommendation to sell from neutral.

Tullow Oil led a gauge of oil and gas companies lower after it said it would take a $440m write-down on its assets in the first half of the year.

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