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ISEQ rises after stronger EU GDP data

Friday, February 14 14:07:30

The ISEQ rose this morning as investors around Europe reacted favourably as firmer economic growth in Germany and France fuelled expectations of a rebound in corporate profits in Europe this year.

By 2pm, the ISEQ was up 25 points to 4,937.43.

The FTSEurofirst 300 was up 0.5 percent at 1,332.04 points, with Italy's FTSE MIB, up 1.7 percent. It was outperforming on the prospect of a new centre-left leader in the country believed to be committed to reforms. The FTSEurofirst 300 index, up more than 5 percent from an early February low, has recovered around three quarters of what it lost during the recent emerging markets sell-off.

Glanbia stocks fell 26c to E10.85 after its peer, GNC holdings, the specialist health and nutrition retailer, reported Q4 and full year results yesterday evening. Revenue grew 8.6pc driven by strong growth across all segments, retail (+7.8pc), franchise (+9.4pc) and manufacturing/wholesale (+13pc). Domestic same-store sales were up 5pc. In terms of outlook, the group has guided for EPS of between $3.18 - $3.24 (vs. consensus $3.46) and a high single digit increase in consolidated revenues. This is due to an extremely challenging retail environment in January and February, a function, management said on its conference call, of the poor weather conditions. "GNC as the largest specialist retailer in the US is a significant customer for Glanbia. The strong performance by GNC in Q4 bodes well for Glanbia ahead of its FY results on March 12th where we forecast 19pc organic growth for the core performance nutrition business," said Goodbody Stockbrokers.