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Irish bond issuance nears 2018 target

The National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) issued €1bn of bonds on Thursday, taking the State to 80pc of the lower bound of this year’s borrowing target.

Yesterday’s deal saw investors secure a 0.958pc annual yield on €500m of 10-year bonds. Bonds due to repaid in 2022, carried a 0.02pc yield.

Elsewhere, sterling tumbled yesterday after the Bank of England opted to keep interest rates on hold and revised down growth forecasts.

The pound fell against the US dollar to 1.348, and 0.75pc against the euro to 1.133.

As the pound tumbled the FTSE 100 went in the opposite direction, closing up 0.5pc, or 38.45 points to a three-month high of 7,700.97.

In UK stocks, Next was the biggest top-flight riser, gaining 322p to 5,568p, as the retailer upgraded its annual profits forecast following a sales boost from the recent heatwave.

ITV was the second highest riser after the broadcasting giant posted rising first-quarter revenue, helped by a strong performance in its studios division. Shares closed 9.15p up at 160.35p.

Royal Bank of Scotland was also on the up after agreeing a $4.9bn (€4.1bn) settlement with US regulators over claims it mis-sold toxic mortgage bonds in the run-up to the financial crisis. Shares closed up 10.4p at 286.5p.

France’s Cac 40 was up 0.2pc, while the Dax in Germany rose 0.6pc.

In oil markets, Brent crude prices were relatively stable, nudging down 0.2pc to 77.180 US dollars per barrel after a day of hefty gains. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial rose 154.43 points.

The Iseq index of Irish shares closed up 7.86 points at 6991.36.


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