Stocks rise in anticipation of US policy
Federal Reserve expected to reaffirm commitment to supporting economic recovery
Ryanir confirmed as the world’s most popular airline after IATA’s World Airline Transport Statistics showed it carried 79.6 million international passengers last year.
Global equity markets rose and the dollar strengthened against the yen yesterday on expectations the US Federal Reserve will reinforce its commitment this week to supporting economic recovery.
Stocks on Wall Street and major European indices gained 1 per cent or more as investors await the end of a two-day meeting of the US central bank tomorrow, when investors hope to hear more about Fed policy from chairman Ben Bernanke.
Dublin’s Iseq index finished the day up 0.6 per cent at 3,917. One stockbroker said there was a bit of relief all round, but nothing “wild and wonderful”.
He said Bank of Ireland was the worst performer of the day, declining 3.7 per cent as it came off highs.
Elan shares ended the day flat at €10.08, after shareholders approved a share repurchase programme at an egm in Dublin. The Irish drugmaker’s three other proposals, relating to a series of planned acquisitions, did not gain the support of investors.
Independent News & Media rose nearly 23 per cent after shareholders approved the sale of the company’s South African unit and the allotment of new shares for restructuring.
Meanwhile, Aer Lingus climbed 1.8 per cent to €1.62, and Ryanair fell 0.8 per cent to €6.81. Ryanair yesterday welcomed confirmation from the International Air Transport Association that it is the world’s most popular airline after IATA’s World Airline Transport Statistics showed it carried 79.6 million international passengers last year, almost 29 million more than second-placed Lufthansa.
Britain’s top share index gained yesterday, with some investors seeing value in the market after a four-week sell-off, and with stronger US housing data boosting sentiment on construction and engineering stocks.
The FTSE 100 index closed up 22.23 points, or 0.4 per cent, at 6,330.49 points.
The slight rebound came after four straight weeks of losses driven by concern that the US Federal Reserve could become the first major central bank to scale back the plentiful stimulus that has supported global equities over the past year.
Imagination Technologies slid 3.4 per cent after Barclays downgraded the shares.
Carillion gained 2.7 per cent after saying it won a £130 million contract for work on the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre project.
European stocks rose to a one-week high, rebounding from their longest streak of weekly losses in 14 months, as investors awaited this week’s Federal Reserve meeting for signs on the pace of stimulus reduction.
Telefónica, Europe’s most indebted telephone company, climbed 2.4 per cent after a report that AT&T had been keen to acquire the company.
Saipem plunged 29 per cent to €14.24, for the worst performance on the Stoxx 600. The Italian oil and gas contractor plummeted to a four-year low after cutting its 2013 guidance for the second time in six months due to problems with contracts in Algeria, Mexico and Canada.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose 0.7 per cent to 293.25 at the close, for the first back-to-back gains this month.
France’s CAC 40 rose 1.5 per cent, and Germany’s DAX advanced 1.1 per cent.
US stocks rose in early trading, with the Standard and Poor’s 500 Index rebounding from last week’s decline, as investors weighed prospects for less economic stimulus before this week’s Fed meeting.
Netflix rose 6.7 per cent after agreeing a multi-year deal with DreamWorks Animation.
Micron Technology advanced 4.5 per cent after Citigroup Inc lifted its price target.
– (Additional reporting: PA, Reuters, Bloomberg)