ECB interest rate plan props up market

Markets continued to perform well yesterday following comments from European Central Bank president Mario Draghi that interest rates are likely to remain unchanged.

The European Central Bank and the Bank of England both left their benchmark rates unchanged. Mr Draghi said indications are that the euro area economy is stabilising and the central bank’s rates will remain low for an extended period.

The Iseq closed up 1.6 per cent, broadly in line with European markets and to its highest level since September 2008.

Risk assets, in particular, fared well from the interest rate announcements with CRHgaining almost 2 per cent and Ryanair finishing with 3 per cent gains.

Kenmare Resources’ issuing of an update on plans to reschedule debt repayments was met very positively: stocks in Ireland closing up 10.5 per cent and in the UK by 11 per cent.

Smurfit Kappa was slightly off, down 0.7 per cent at the close and failing to see a continuation of positive trading on Wednesday.

The Grafton Group on the other hand continued its good run, finishing up almost 2 per cent with volumes three times the average of last week, and at levels not seen since 2008. Source: The Irish Times