Business World

Thursday 14 December 2017

Positive data pushes stocks up

Sarah McCabe

Sarah McCabe

IRISH stocks rose yesterday, another positive day following price declines earlier last week.

The ISEQ Overall Index rose 1.53pc or 60.74 points to close at 4,024.07 with gains mirroring price increases in Europe, where stocks were up in response to positive economic data.

The biggest gain and loss of the day both went to gold companies. Ovoca Gold, which has interests in Russia, jumped 21.6pc to 14c, while Conroy Gold, which primarily mines in Ireland, fell 66.7pc to 2c.

Ryanair jumped 4.2pc to €7.40 after deputy chief executive Michael Cawley announced his intention to step down as an executive but join the company board next year.

The carrier is awaiting a decision on whether it must sell its 29.8pc stake in Aer Lingus.

Aer Lingus was up 1.7pc to €1.54.

Bank of Ireland rose 1.9pc to 16c while insurer FBD was up 2pc to €14.85. Other financial institutions faired less favourably. AIB declined 6.6pc to 6c while pensions and investment advisory IFG group shed 1.4pc to €1.36.

In Europe, stocks rose as statistics showed that euro-area factory output in June contracted less than estimated, while other research showed that Japanese manufacturers were optimistic for the first time since September 2011.

Japan's quarterly Tankan index for large manufacturers reported positive sentiment for the first time since September 2011.

WEAK

"We've had quite a weak month in June, so people may be prepared to look more positively," said Andrea Williams of Royal London Asset Management.

"Investors may be a bit more aggressive on the cyclicals. Japan's manufacturing report helps, with the economic conditions improving because of the actions that have been taken."

National benchmark indexes advanced in all western European markets except Iceland. France's CAC 40 added 0.8pc, while Germany's DAX increased 0.3pc. The UK's FTSE 100 rallied 1.5pc, its most since late May.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index added 1.2pc to 288.29 at the close of trading.

The benchmark advanced 1.7pc last week as China took steps to ease a cash crunch but has still lost 5.3pc in June alone, after US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke said the nation's central bank could taper stimulus measures if its economy improved sustainably.

Finnish phonemaker Nokia Oyj rallied 3.7pc after the company agreed to buy Siemens' stake in their joint venture.

Siemens' share price also jumped in response, up by 2.6pc, its most in 11 months. The company is Europe's largest maker of electronic equipment.

Meanwhile, Peugeot Citroen fell 2.5pc after French car registrations declined in June.

Irish Independent

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