Slide in sterling ripples through British and Irish markets
Ryanair shares down almost 2% in Dublin, with flight cancellations set to cost it €25m
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on September 18th. Photograph: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg
Most European share indices nudged ahead, the Iseq lagging slightly with an increase of 0.1 per cent.
London’s blue chip index the FTSE 100 recovered some of the losses it suffered last week, supported in part by a weaker pound that fell further after a speech from Bank of England boss Mark Carney.
Wall Street hit new life highs powered by financials, technology and industrials stocks even as investors await cues from the US Federal Reserve on its future path of monetary policy.
Ryanair was the most significant faller, with its shares closing down close to 2 per cent. Chief executive Michael O’Leary suggested that the wave of flight cancellations over the next six weeks could cost it up to €25 million. More than €1.4 billion has been wiped off its market capitalisation since last Wednesday.
The two big agrifood stocks, Glanbia and Kerry Group, performed well, up more than 1.5 per cent and almost 1.2 per cent respectively.
Green REIT had a good trading session, especially in the afternoon, and closed up almost 2.8 per cent after posting solid financial results. Its development profits were well ahead of analyst estimates.
Irish Contiental Group, the owner of Irish Ferries, fell almost 2.5 per cent. Oil price rises didn’t help the stock, while a weaker pound makes the British side of its customer base less lucrative when translated back into euro.
Financials, which tend to be more volatile than other sectors, added the most to gains, with shares in HSBC, Standard Chartered and Barclays gaining 0.5 per cent to 1.6 per cent.
Other cyclical sectors, such as energy, also rose, with heavyweights BP and Royal Dutch Shell both up 0.7 per cent as oil prices hit $50 per barrel.
Defence firm BAE Systems was among the biggest individual risers, jumping 4.2 per cent after Qatar signed a deal to buy 24 Typhoon aircraft from the company.
Engineering firm GKN was another top gainer, jumping around 3 per cent following an upgrade from Exane BNP Paribas, with the broker citing benefits from possible future disposals.
Defensive shares including tobacco companies Imperial Brands and British American Tobacco and precious metals miner Randgold Resources brought up the rear on the FTSE.
The French Cac 40 and German Dax ended the day up around 0.3 per cent each.
Semicondoctor company Infineon Technologies led the Dax higher with a rise of more than 1.5 per cent. Morgan Stanley increased its price target on the stock in a note to investors on Monday morning.
Steel company Thyssenkrupp was the worst performer on the Dax, down more than 0.7 per cent. It has also been affected by analysts ratings, while union bosses are mounting a campaign of opposition to a proposed merger with the European operations of Tata Steel.
Ten of the 11 major S&P sectors were higher heading into the afternoon session, led by a 0.59 per cent gain in the financial index. Financial stocks benefited from a rising US Treasury yields, with the yield on benchmark 10-year notes at 2.2 percent.
Shares of the major banks Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and Citigroup were up more than 1 per cent.
The major indexes have been breaking new highs, with the Dow recording its best weekly gains this year and the S&P its second best.
Boeing and Caterpillar rose more than 1 per cent, providing the biggest boosts to the Dow, while Nvidia’s near 5 per cent increase pushed the Nasdaq higher. Analysts have focused on Nvidia’ progress in artificial intelligence, and have set steep increases in its price target.
Orbital ATK jumped 20.69 per cent after Northrop Grumman said it would buy the missile and rocket maker for about $7.8 billion in cash. Northrop’s shares inched up 1.54 per cent.
(Additional reporting: Reuters/PA)