Tuesday, October 08 17:33:55
Signs of progress on the fiscal standoff in Washington helped lift the markets' depressed mood a tad but lingering fear of any U.S. debt default weighed on world shares and oil.
The ISEQ fell 48.43 points to 4,223.06.
Finance minister, Michael Noonan, today softened the punch of next week's Budget, saying that the axe and tax adjustment would be E2.5 billion and not the previously flagged E3.1 billion. He said that the Troika are content to see the fiscal adjustment target reduced. "Somewhere north of E2.5bn - not less than two, two-point five - because of the significant savings that are coming through," he said to reporters outside the Dail this morning when quizzed on the level of adjustment.
Goodbody today said fears of overheating in the UK housing market are bound to intensify after the latest RICS survey showed price growth continued to accelerate in September. The balance of surveyors stating that prices have increased over the past three months rose to +54pc last month, its highest level since June 2002. Apart from the North-East, price growth is now occurring in all parts of the UK, while average sales per surveyor rose to the highest level since 2009 last month. Shares in Abbey rose 5c to E8.85.
CRH stocks fell 30c to E17.27. The UK Competition Authority has announced that it wants to "invigorate competition" in the UK cement market by opening the way for a new entrant. As a result, it is requiring the Lafarge / Tarmac JV to sell one cement plant (and accompanying readymix concrete plants where necessary). While CRH does not produce cement in the UK, it has built up a sizeable import terminal business with estimated volumes of 400k tonnes. The UK import approximately 1.2m tonnes and consumes 10-11m tonnes per annum. "With a cement plant up for sale in the UK CRH is likely to be named as an interested party. However, we view this as unlikely as the position would not provide for further consolidation opportunities. Indeed, the Competition Authority is looking to break-up the market," said Goodbody Stockbrokers.