Positive mood in European markets

Ryanair the most-traded stock on Iseq as shares rise 3.2 per cent, profits reach €1.4bn

The Iseq rose by 1.1 per cent as European shares had a positive start to the week after business surveys from around the euro zone beat expectations.

UK stocks were little changed after gains in banks offset a decline in mining shares.

Heading into afternoon trading, Wall Street was higher as data showed factory activity was beginning to stabilise in key countries and healthcare stocks rallied. DUBLIN Petroceltic International fell by more than 4 per cent in mid-morning trading and didn't recover any of that ground over the rest of the day.

The company, which is locked a disputes with its biggest shareholder, Worldview Capital, still hasn't set a date for the issuance of a bond that will be crucial to the development of its prime Algerian asset. If it doesn't get a bond away, Worldview may try and oust management if the company turns to shareholders for more capital.


Ryanair rose by 3.2 per cent after a strong set of results in the six months to the end of September. Profits soared to €1.4 billion, including a gain on the sale of its Aer Lingus stake. About €108 million worth of Ryanair stock changed hands on the Dublin market, making it the Iseq's most traded stock on the day. Tullow Oil fell 0.75 per cent to close at €2.77 a share, as the company continues to be hit by weak oil prices.


Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland all advanced 1.7 per cent or more, tracking gains in European lenders. BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto fell 1.4 per cent or more after disappointing Chinese factory data.

Hikma Pharmaceuticals declined 5.2 per cent after lowering the sales forecast for its generics business.

EasyJet dropped 2.1 per cent after HSBC downgraded the shares, citing increased revenue pressure.

HSBC fell 0.8 per cent in spite of a better-than-expected 32 per cent rise in pre-tax profit for the third quarter, thanks to reduced costs.


Greek shares outperformed as investors welcomed the outcome of ECB stress tests on its four main banks.

Athens' ATG index was up 3.1 per cent, lifted by gains of nearly 30 per cent in Alpha Bank and Eurobank, while Piraeus Bank rose 18.3 per cent and the National Bank of Greece was up 7.7 per cent.

Sentiment in European stocks generally remained positive amid expectations of gains going in to the end of the year.

Commerzbank rose 6.6 per cent after the German bank said it would pay a dividend for the first time since 2007.

Electrolux dropped 5.4 per cent after the US Justice Department rejected the Swedish appliance maker's offer to settle a fight over whether it would be allowed to buy General appliance business. Renault rose 4.2 per cent. French car registrations rose 1 per cent in October, with Renault recovering some lost ground, while rival PSA Peugeot Citroën fell.


Eight of the 10 major S&P sectors were higher, with the health care sector's nearly 2 per cent rise leading the advancers. Pfizer was up 3.5 per cent and Abbvie 6 per cent, providing the biggest boost to the index.

Valeant was up 6.2 per cent at $99.63 after Citron Research said it would not be releasing new allegations against the Canadian drugmaker. Visa was down about 3.1 per cent at $75.17 after offering to buy Visa Europe for $23.34 billion. The stock was the biggest drag on the Dow and the S&P 500.

Hewlett-Packard started trading after its split. HP jumped 12.4 per cent to $13.76, while Hewlett Packard Enterprise was nearly flat at $14.75.

Dyax soared nearly 30 per cent to $35.69 after Shire said it would buy the company for $5.9 billion. Chipotle Mexican Grill was down 2.6 per cent at $623.16 after closing all its restaurants in Seattle and Portland due to a reported outbreak of E.coli bacteria.

Additional reporting: Bloomberg/Reuters

Mark Paul

Mark Paul

Mark Paul is London Correspondent for The Irish Times