Friday 15 December 2017

Stimulus talk buoys Europe stocks

European union flag
European union flag
Mark Keenan

Mark Keenan

STOCKS rose throughout Europe yesterday amid increasing expectations of further stimulus by both the ECB and the US Federal Reserve Bank. Amidst the generally positive atmosphere, the ISEQ Overall Index added 1.6pc, or 49.7 points to take it to 3,196.

Rare earth miner Kenmare Resources surged the most on the day with a rise of 9.2pc taking it to 47c. It rose significantly too in London, by 5.1pc, possibly on the back of some positive views -- including one from an analyst at 'The Daily Telegraph'. The argument is being made that the decision by peer company Ikula to cut back production to maintain margins should have a positive effect on earnings for Kenmare.

Last week, the company raised £40m on a share placement and would appear to be well-funded enough now to get back on schedule at its Moma mine in Mozambique.

Also surging yesterday was the oil company Aminex, which added 8.33pc to 7c on the back of good news in the United States, where the company has just announced details of its marketing campaign to dispose of its remaining US assets. The ironing out of some difficulties in making them market-ready means the sale should now progress on schedule.

Surge

Independent News & Media surged by 7.3pc to 22c with news that Peter Hunt, a founder of the Greenhill Caliburn corporate consultancy, has been appointed chairman of APN news and media, the Australian and New Zealand-based media company of which INM owns 29.5pc.

AIB also gained by 4.2pc to 5c following its first-half figures which showed losses cut back to €1.2bn hot on the heels of news that it is to cut costs by consolidating branches and will raise its interest rates in line with competition.

C&C gained 3.8pc to €3.51 amid recent success in its marketing of Bulmers value packs while the Olympics and occasional bouts of warm weather have improved its drinks prospects after a washout June. Ryanair gained 2.4pc to €4.00 amid positive broker reports.

CRH, which has been acquisitive this year in America and spreading its risk from Europe, jumped 2.5pc to €15.65. But Grafton Group slid 1pc to €2.82 amid news that sales of hardware, paints and glass declined by 10pc in June. Tumblers on the day included oil stocks like Providence, which lost 1.7pc to €8.16, and Petroneft, which slid 1.2pc to 8c amidst weakening oil and gas prices.

Elsewhere, the Stoxx Europe 600 rose 1.6pc, the FTSE 100 added 1.2pc, the CAC 40 also climbed 1.2pc and the German DAX stepped up 1.3pc.

Factors which dampened some of the day's positivity included news of Spain's economy shrinking further in the second quarter, while economic sentiment in the eurozone fell to a three-year low alongside German production expectations.

Irish Independent

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