Nervous market in retreat as Wall Street jitter persist


ALTHOUGH activity was at a low level, the Irish market, led by the blue chips, was firmly pointing downwards. Like other European markets, Irish shares were unsettled following the jitters on Wall Street which was sharply down on the opening.

This led to long term bond rates rising, leading to renewed fears that US interest rates may rise, a scenario not liked by the markets. "Everyone is waiting to see how Wall Street closes," one dealer opined.

But Irish shares were not as badly affected as other European shares. The Irish market was down less than 1 per cent while other bourses topped that by a wide margin.

There were no specific features in Dublin, but the banks led the downward trend. AIB, in a number of deals, shed 7p to 389p. Bank of Ireland had a 5p decline to 511p but later in a mini recovery put on 1p to 512p.

Anglo Irish also drifted. First hardened 0.5p to 72p then went down hill to 70.5 before recovering to 71p at the close. Irish Permanent following the weak trend of financials fell 5p to 485p.

Many eyes were on Kerry after its brokers downgraded the forecast for this year because of an anticipated lower tax charge. This was denied by sources close to the company. Watchers, however, must have been disappointed because only one deal was marked and this was unchanged at 595p.

Industrial were also settled.

CRH, in a number of deals, gave up 10p to 600p. But before the close it put on 5p to finish at 605p.

Barlo seen as a recovery stock added 0.5p to 41p. Investors will, be watching to see if the recovery is sustained. IWP lost 5p at 260p.

In the exploration sector, Tullow, in keeping with its traditional yo yo movement, rose by 7p to 80p. It rarely does things in low pennies, opting instead for bigger movements.