Sun, Dec 05, 2010 - Page 10 News List

European markets gain on extended ECB liquidity tools

Bloomberg

European stocks posted the first weekly advance in four as the European Central Bank (ECB) delayed its withdrawal of emergency liquidity measures and bought government bonds in Portugal, Ireland and Greece.

Bank of Ireland PLC surged 22 percent as euro-region governments agreed to hand the nation an 85 billion euro (US$114 billion) aid package. Porsche SE gained 12 percent after the approval of a 5 billion euro stock sale to reduce debt. Fresnillo PLC and ArcelorMittal led basic-resources stocks higher, rising more than 7 percent.

The STOXX Europe 600 Index rose 1.6 percent to 270.94 this past week, bringing the gauge to within 1 percent of this year’s highest level.

The measure has rallied 17 percent since its low for this year in May, amid better-than-estimated company earnings and speculation policymakers in the US and elsewhere will implement more stimulus measures to prop up the recovery.

National benchmark indexes rose in 16 out of 18 western European markets. Germany’s DAX and the UK’s FTSE 100 Index each gained 1.4 percent, while France’s CAC 40 Index advanced 0.6 percent.

Ireland’s ISEQ ended the week 2.8 percent higher after the government accepted an EU-led bailout.

Spain’s IBEX 35 rallied 4.9 percent for the biggest weekly gain since July as Banco Santander SA soared 11 percent.

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