Irish shares rise as European interests focus on French elections

Kerry and Glanbia were both higher by the end of the day, adding 0.33 per cent and 0.16 per cent respectively

The blue-chip Dow hit a one-month high in a broad-based rally on Monday. Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

European equities advanced on Monday, with investor attention focused on the first round of French parliamentary elections later this week.


The Irish index of shares ended the day higher, rising almost 0.3 per cent as banks and food stocks gained some ground.

Shares in AIB were 0.4 per cent higher by the close of the session, while Bank of Ireland was up almost 2 per cent and PTSB gain 0.75 per cent.

Ryanair added 0.67 per cent to its share price, while ferry operator Irish Continental Group gained 0.7 per cent.


Kerry and Glanbia were both higher by the end of the day, adding 0.33 per cent and 0.16 per cent respectively.

At the other end of the market, Smurfit Kappa was marginally off the pace, shedding 0.67 per cent from its share price. Kingspan lost 0.37 per cent to close the day at €80.20.


The blue-chip FTSE 100 closed 0.5 per cent higher, touching a three-week high and hitting the psychological 8,300 mark earlier in the session.

The mid-cap FTSE 250 gained 0.6 per cent.

Prudential also boosted the life insurance sector to a two-week high, with a 7.3 per cent jump after it announced a $2 billion buyback plan.

Among stocks on the rise, Britvic jumped 7.1 per cent after PepsiCo agreed to waive a change of control clause in its bottling arrangements with the soft drinks maker, a move that could pave way for Carlsberg to raise its bid for the company.

The stock was the top gainer on the mid-cap index.


The Europe-wide STOXX 600 closed up 0.7 per cent, slightly below a nearly two-week high hit earlier in the session.

Banks rose 1.7 per cent to lead sectoral gains, with Italian lenders such as BPER, UniCredit and Monte dei Paschi di Siena gaining between 3.8 per cent and 4.9 per cent.

Carmakers added 1.5 per cent as the European Union and China agreed to hold talks on the planned imposition of tariffs on Chinese-made electric vehicles.

Ahead of the first round of France’s parliamentary elections this week, polls show a lead for the far-right National Rally (RN) party and its allies. Previously analysts have feared a far-right government could spend recklessly, but analysts on Monday said the view had shifted.

The French benchmark closed 1 per cent higher on Monday.

Among other stocks, Hochtief climbed by nearly 10 per cent as Jefferies upgraded the German construction firm to “buy” from “hold”, citing the company’s growing exposure to high-tech infrastructure projects.

Belgian pharmaceutical company argenx jumped 9 per cent after it said the US FDA approved Vyvgart Hytrulo, a treatment for chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy.

New York

The blue-chip Dow hit a one-month high in a broad-based rally on Monday, as investors rotated out of AI-linked stocks, while focus turned to a key inflation print later in the week to sharpen bets around interest rate cuts this year.

The S&P 500 hovered near 5,475 on Monday, while the Nasdaq 100 underperformed major benchmarks after coming close to the 20,000 mark last week.

Nvidia dropped 4.9 per cent, sliding for the third day, with market participants citing profit taking in the semiconductor bellwether and other AI stocks following its meteoric rise to the world’s most valuable company last week.

Other chip stocks including US shares of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, Broadcom, Marvell Technology and Qualcomm dropped 2 per cent-5 per cent, dragging the chip stocks index down 1.7 per cent.

Technology was the only laggard among the 11 S&P 500 sector indexes, hitting a near two-week low.

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist