Bank shares up over US bail-out hopes

Ireland banks gathered stock market momentum today amid revived hopes of a revamped $700bn (€482bn) financial salvage plan.

Expectations of Congressional approval for a deal in the US saw the AIB, Anglo Irish Bank, Bank of Ireland and Irish Life and Permanent all gain ground as the ISEQ lifted 2.73% or 96.78 points to 3,647.41.

The banks were also boosted by the prospect of a multi-billion State guarantee of top banks.

The draft legislation is expected to pass through its final stages in the Dáil and Seanad today before it is signed into law by the president.

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