European equities rally as jump in metal prices boosts miners

European bourses recover on encouraging company updates and commodities

Despite coming under pressure this week, Bank of Ireland ended up by the end of the session, trading at 26 cent or 4 per cent higher. Photograph: Frantzesco Kangaris/Bloomberg.

Despite coming under pressure this week, Bank of Ireland ended up by the end of the session, trading at 26 cent or 4 per cent higher. Photograph: Frantzesco Kangaris/Bloomberg.

 

The market finished 92 points higher at 6,420 for the day, with traders noting a global rally extended to Irish stocks.

CRH performed well, rising to €22.96 to finish the session 1.3 per cent higher, in keeping with the wider Irish market.

Ryanair finished flat at €14.025, despite initially trading higher early in the session. Traders speculated results from IAG weighed on the airline, causing it to slightly underperform the market.

Despite coming under pressure this week, Bank of Ireland ended up by the end of the session, trading at 26 cent or 4 per cent higher. Permanent TSB was another good performer of the day, ending 4.2 per cent up at €2.50.

The news that Green Reit had renegotiated its deal with Vodafone Ireland , agreeing an eight-year lease for the company at its Leopardstown property, was viewed reasonably positive. Stock steadied at €1.327, relatively flat on the day.

Fyffes, meanwhile, saw its stock slip 2.8 per cent as its results were slightly behind. LONDON British shares rallied yesterday and posted a second week of gains in a row, boosted by a rally in publisher Pearson and London Stock Exchange Group, though Royal Bank of Scotland reported its eighth full-year loss in a row.

RBS shares plunged 7.1 per cent and were set for their biggest daily loss since June 2012. The state-backed bank reported a full-year loss of 1.97 billion pounds ($2.75 billion), weighed down by further restructuring and litigation costs. “Despite better progress on capital, RBS has reported a disappointing set of numbers with both revenue and costs light due to weak investment bank performance,” analysts at Jefferies said in a note.

Miners were the top performers, following sharp gains in the prices of key industrial metals such as copper and aluminium. Shares in Glencore, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto rose by 2.9 to 7.9 per cent.

IAG closed 3.1 per cent lower despite the British Airways owner providing an upbeat outlook for profit this year, with some traders citing concerns that a strong dollar might increase costs. EUROPE European stocks rose for a second day as investors assessed corporate results and amid speculation that central banks will support global growth. Eni climbed 5.8 per cent after the Italian oil company’s exploration and production division performed better than expected and output increased to the highest in five years.

BASF added 3.5 per cent after proposing a higher dividend. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose, extending its advance after a disappointing inflation reading for Germany. Separate data showed consumer prices in France and Spain missed estimates, strengthening the case for an expansion of the European Central Bank’s monetary stimulus. US US stocks have ended a strong week on a flat note as lower oil prices and utility stocks offset encouraging economic news.

Still, the market ended yesterday with a second straight weekly gain. The Commerce Department said US gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 1 per cent in the fourth quarter, an improvement from an earlier estimate of 0.7 per cent. That surprising good news pushed prices of bonds and dividend-paying stocks like utilities down, however.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 57 points, or 0.3 per cent, to close at 16,639. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index lost 3 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 1,948. The Nasdaq composite rose 8 points, or 0.2 per cent , to 4,590. – (Additional reporting: Reuters)