Main banking stocks fall 7% despite overall stock market gain

THE main banking stocks fell by a combined 7% yesterday, despite the Dublin market gaining 1.03% in total to close at 3,176 points.

AIB fell by 4.62% – 11c – to close at €2.31; while Bank of Ireland – on the back of news that it accidentally overcharged on a number of laser card transactions at the end of last week – was down by 2.72% (6c) at €2.22.

While the ISEQ’s upward movement was in line with the main European markets, it was to a level still well below most of its peers. London’s FTSE, for instance, surged by 1.14% to 5,004 points, yesterday, which was the first occasion this year it has breached the 5,000 point mark.

Frankfurt’s DAX market was up by 1.7% at 5,574 points, while the CAC 40 in Paris rose by 1.3% to rise above the 3,700 point mark for the first time this year.

Among the drivers of growth in Dublin, were building materials giant CRH – up by 45c at €18.75; the similarly disciplined Grafton Group (up by 8c, or over 2.1% at €3.88) and FBD Insurance, which jumped by 27c to €7.77.

Irish Life & Permanent (IL&P) gained 3.41%, 17c, to reach €5.15; recruitment specialist CPL was up by 3c at €1.90 and Ryanair gained 9c to close at €3.39.

However, the likes of food group, Kerry (down 15c at €20) and pharmaceutical company, Elan (down by 2c at €5.30) fell.

The US markets were heading for their fourth consecutive day of gains, yesterday afternoon, as the Nasdaq went ahead by 1.1% and the Dow Jones closed up 0.53%; ahead of the Federal Reserve’s latest measurement of national economic conditions through its Beige Book issuance.

The Tokyo-based Nikkei index, meanwhile, closed yesterday down by 81 points (or 0.8%) at 10,312 points – a move which followed on from two consecutive days of gains.


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