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News : International Last Updated: Jan 28, 2011 - 5:48 AM


Markets News Afternoon: Finance Bill passes in Dáil; Nokia Q4 profit dips 21%; Irish Stock Exchange equity turnover fell 15% in 2010
By Finfacts Team
Jan 27, 2011 - 4:43 PM

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Nicolas Sarkozy, President of France, gestures while speaking to the audience during the session 'Vision for the G-20' at the Annual Meeting 2011 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 27, 2011. © World Economic Forum swiss-image.ch/Photo by Sebastian Derungs

Nokia: Shares in Nokia, the world’s biggest mobile-phone maker fell almost 9% in Helsinki today, after the company with about 32% of the global market, reported that net income dipped to €745m from €948m a year earlier. Sales climbed 6% to €12.7bn.

Apple has has had big success with its iPhone smartphone and last week, it reported a 78% jump in profit for the last three months of 2010 to $6bn.

In contrast, Nokia's profit tumbled 21%.

Finance Bill: The Finance Bill passed all stages in the Dáil today with the Government winning the vote on the report and final stages by 81 votes to 76.

The Bill which incorporates provisions outlined in the Budget last December, now goes to the Seanad.

Earlier Thursday, Labour's Joan Burton said she welcomed the Government's amendment on bank bonuses, providing for the introduction of an effective tax of 90% on bonuses over €20,000.

Allied Irish Banks in a press statement said "with regard to comments that Deputy Joan Burton is reported to have made in the Dáil today relating to AIB bonus payments, we'd like to make it clear that the bank is not making any such payments."

EU: The European Commission today said it would take Ireland to the European Court of Justice over an exit tax it imposes on companies which cease to be tax resident in Ireland.

Under Irish law a company is taxed on 'unrealised' capital gains when it transfers its offices to another member state. Transfers within Ireland are not taxed the same way.

The Commission claims that this is discriminatory and would hinder companies in their right under EU treaties to freedom of establishment.

The Commission sent formal notice to the Government in November 2009, and has issued today's follow-up in the form of a reasoned opinion.

If there is no satisfactory response within two months then the Commission may refer Ireland to the European Court of Justice. Portugal, the Netherlands, Spain and Denmark have already been referred to the Court on the same issue.

Davos 2011: Timo Ihamuotila, CFO of Nokia told CNBC the quarter was in line with the group's expectations, adding he was pleased with the cash flow. "There is a lot of new competition in the mobile phone space," he said:

Irish Stock Exchange 2010:  Volume of trades remains steady but equity turnover decreases by 14.6% year on year   -  The ISE market statistics for 2010 show that the number of trades dealt on the ISE in 2010 [2,117k] and the daily average number of trades [8,334] remained steady when compared to the volume of equity trades in 2009 [2,290k and 9,051 respectively]. Turnover decreased by 14.6% to €45.6bn during 2010 [2009: €53.4bn] reflecting a fall off in turnover during the latter half of 2010.

Market capitalisation of equities admitted to trading on the ISE ended 2010 at over €48bn, up 7% from the value recorded at the end of 2009.

Irish companies raised funds of more than €5.3bn over the year, more than double the amount raised in 2009 [€2.1bn]. The most significant fund raising in 2010 was undertaken by Bank of Ireland plc [€4.2bn], of which €4.1bn was undertaken in the second quarter. Other companies raising significant capital in 2010 included AIB plc [€149m], Providence Resources plc [€111m], Petroceltic [€107m] and IFG Group [€67m].

Davos 2011: "There are pressures, there are tensions, but for the moment, governments have reasonably contained them. World trade today is as open as it was two years ago," Pascal Lamy, director general of the World Trade Organisation told CNBC:

US Markets

In New York Thursday the Dow fell 2 points to 11,984.

The S&P 500 has dipped 0.06% and the Nasdaq has gained 0.17%.

The number of Americans signing contracts to buy previously owned homes rose in December for a third month, showing the industry is stabilising.

The index increased 2.0% to 93.7 based on contracts signed in December from a downwardly revised 91.9 in November. The index is 4.2% below the 97.8 mark in December 2009. The data reflects contracts and not closings, which normally occur with a lag time of one or two months.

Meanwhile, US orders for capital equipment from the business sector - - items expected to last at least 10 years - - rose in December for a second month, signalling evidence of growing business demand for goods like mainframe computers, servers and communications gear excluding aircraft, as the value climbed 1.4% after a 3.1% gain in November. Initial weekly jobless benefit claims jumped 51,000 last week, partially relating to the processing of a backlog of claims resulting from bad weather conditions.

US orders for capital equipment grew in December; New weekly jobless claims jump 51,000 - - spike resulted from backlog of claims

Live US Indices

Davos 2011: Computing in the global economy, with Michael Dell, Dell chairman & CEO, and CNBC's Maria Bartiromo:

European Markets

The pan-European Dow Jones Stoxx 600 has climbed 19% Thursday.

In Dublin the ISEQ has dipped 0.46%.

CRH which accounts for about 27% of the Dublin market's capitalisation, is down 0.46%; Elan has dipped 1.51%; Aer Lingus is up 3.01% and First Derivative has plunged almost 14%.

European benchmarks

Irish share prices

Euribor Interest Rates

Commodities

Crude oil for March delivery is currently trading on the Chicago York Mercantile Exchange (CME/Nymex) at $85.94 per barrel down $1.39 from Wednesday's close. In London, Brent for March is trading on the International Commodities Exchange at $97.75.

Currencies

The euro is trading at $1.3689 and at £0.8608.

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