Renewed concern hits stocks

RENEWED concern over the actual pace of recovery in the world’s economy hampered growth in international markets yesterday.

However, early declines in the main US markets were reversed into modest early gains despite weaker than expected monthly job figures from the States.

That data also dampened positive movement in Europe, but the main markets on this side of the Atlantic managed small gains in the end – aided by a lower-than-anticipated demand for European Central Bank (ECB) loans from eurozone-based banks, suggesting that the continent’s economy is healthier than feared.

London’s FTSE inched up to 4,917 points; while there were also respective modest gains of 0.3% and 0.2% in Paris and Frankfurt, the latter closing in on the 6,000 point mark.

Dublin’s ISEQ remained largely unmoved at 2,879 points yesterday. Irish Life & Permanent (IL&P) was the only positive mover of the banking stocks, rising by 1c to a closing price of €1.52. AIB fell by 2c to close at 88c and Bank of Ireland was down by the same amount at 67c. It was a better day for another financial services provider, IFG Group, which, after an upbeat message to shareholders at its annual general meeting, saw its share price rise by 2c to €1.15.

Good performers in Dublin included building materials group, Grafton which was up by 7c at €2.92 and CRH which gained an impressive 42c to close at €17.14.

Elsewhere, drug firm Elan was up by 4c to €3.74.


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