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ISEQ dips, underwhelmed by Draghi
Thursday, 5th July 2012 05.49pm

The ISEQ slipped in to negative territory today with investors underwhelmed by comments from ECB chief, Mario Draghi and amid dashed hopes of impending initiatives from the central bank to drive the eurozone economy forward.

The index fell 3.72 points to 3,214.67.

European shares slipped from two-month highs to end slightly lower as a slew of expected positive measures by central banks to boost growth prompted investors to book profits, while encouraging data dimmed chances of more U.S. stimulus. Disappointing comments from European Central Bank President Mario Draghi about the economic outlook and a lack of hints that more easy money was on the way also weighed, with bond yields in both Spain and Italy rising and their share indexes slumping 3.2 percent and 2 percent, respectively.

EasyJet has released (July 5th) its June traffic statistics. IAG released its June traffic numbers yesterday. EasyJet saw load factor increase to 89.9pc, up 1.6pp versus June 2011. Passenger numbers increased by 9.7pc to 5,434,763. IAG meanwhile saw demand (revenue passenger kilometres) rise by 8.9pc versus June 2011, up 5.9pc on a like-for-like basis, while capacity (available seat kilometres) was up 5.8pc, +2.6pc on a like-for-like basis. Load factor therefore increased by 2.3pt, 2.6pt on a like-for-like basis, to 84pc. Shares in Ryanair rose 6c to E4.08 and Aer Lingus stocks gained 4c to E1.08 after it delivered healthy June passenger growth and load factor numbers.

On July 4th, Dragon Oil announced an initial flow rate o f 2,918 bopd from the third development well drilled from its new platform C, offshore Turkmenistan. "This rate exceeds our assumption of an average initial flow rate of 2,500 bopd from a development well. The first and second wells drilled from platform C flowed at 3,396 and 2,072 bopd respectively. Platform C is located in the western flank of the LAM field offshore Turkmenistan. This is a relatively undepleted part of the LAM field," according to Davy. Shares in the prospector climbed 3c to E7.16.

Betfair announced yesterday that it has reached agreement with the Horseracing industry (British Horseracing Authority (BHA), Racecourse Association and the Horseman's Group) in relation to a new five year commercial agreement. As part of the agreement Betfair has agreed to pay at least 40m to horseracing over the next five years. To recap, Betfair already pays 10.75pc of all its revenues on UK horseracing from UK customers since it moved offshore last year. This new agreement should not lead to a significant increase in costs, according to Goodbody Stockbrokers in Dublin. Shares in Irish bookies, Paddy Power, climbed 8c to E53.08.

Among the smaller caps, shares in Petroceltic edged up 1c to E0.10. Petroceltic has been awarded two licences offshore Italy. The B.R 270 and B.R 271 licences are in the central Adriatic and cover a cumulative area of 470 sq km. The exploration licences run for six years. Petroceltic has 100pc of each, although a 2010 farm-out agreement allows Orca the option to earn a 15pc interest in the permits.

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