European stocks jumped more than 1 per cent on Friday as markets shook off their torrid Thursday performance. Equities across Europe ended the week with their best session in two months as investors sought bargains following one of the worst sell-offs this year.
The dark mood had been prompted by growing concerns that the global economy would not recover at the pace previously expected.
Meanwhile, on Wall Street, the S&P 500 index clocked a new record high on Friday as US stocks rebounded.
The Iseq finished the week on a positive note after Thursday’s sell-off, posting a 1.1 per cent gain on Friday as its biggest stocks recovered lost ground.
The banks, which had led declines in the previous session, were among those to finish in the black, with Bank of Ireland adding 3.4 per cent to €4.42 and AIB closing up 3.9 per cent at €2.08. Cement-maker CRH rose 2.2 per cent to €42.40 as it added Goodbody to its list of corporate brokers, while Glanbia also finished 2.2 per cent higher at €13.83.
As travel stocks rallied, Ryanair nudged up 0.5 per cent on its Dublin listing, closing at €16.20, while packaging company Smurfit Kappa was another climber, rising 2.5 per cent to €46.39.
Index heavyweight Kerry was among the few fallers, declining 0.6 per cent to €120.50, while Cairn Homes also closed 0.6 per cent lower, just below €1.07.
The FTSE 100 climbed 1.3 per cent on the back of gains in mining and bank stocks, but still ended the week flat as a surge in the Delta variant of Covid-19 raised fears for the economy.
Miners including BHP Group, Rio Tinto, Glencore and Anglo American were among the top performers on the blue-chip index, while the mid-cap FTSE 250 index was up 1.1 per cent.
Travel stocks gained 1 per cent after three straight sessions of declines, as the UK government prepared to scrap quarantine for fully-vaccinated arrivals in the coming weeks. Aer Lingus/British Airways-owner International Consolidated Airlines Group (IAG) climbed 1.9 per cent, while EasyJet finished 1.8 per cent higher.
Vectura Group jumped 14 per cent to the top of the mid-cap index after cigarette maker Philip Morris said it would buy the pharmaceutical company in a deal valuing it at £1.05 billion (€1.23 billion).
Luxury goods group Burberry rose 3.8 per cent after Goldman Sachs upgraded the stock to "buy".
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index gained 1.3 per cent, with sectors that took a hit earlier this week such as automakers and miners surging 4 per cent and 3.4 per cent respectively.
French stocks rose by the most in four months, advancing 2.1 per cent and leading gains among major European bourses. In Germany, the Dax added 1.7 per cent.
Airbus gained 3.4 per cent after it reported a 52 per cent increase in aircraft deliveries in the first half of the year, while Italian luxury group Salvatore Ferragamo slipped 0.7 per cent after analysts at Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to "sell".
Investors will now turn their focus to the earnings season, which kicks off in earnest next week.
The S&P 500 index hit a record high as economy-sensitive cyclical sectors including financials and energy rebounded, recouping all its loses triggered by growth worries earlier in the week.
Levi Strauss added 0.6 per cent as it forecast a strong full-year profit after beating quarterly earnings estimates on improving demand across its markets for jeans, tops and jackets.
US-listed shares of Chinese ride-hailing company Didi Global rose 3.1 per cent after four sessions of losses. General Motors added 3.8 per cent after investment firm Wedbush issued an "outperform" rating on the stock.
Among tech stocks, Facebook and Apple were both trading about 1.4 per cent higher at 6.15pm Irish time. – Additional reporting: Reuters