12 Mar 2009

European markets end mixed

7:33 am on 12 March 2009

European stock markets were mixed on Wednesday.

The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares closed 0.3% higher at 692.65 points after a volatile session. The index rallied more than 5% on Tuesday.

In Frankfurt, the DAX index ended at 3,914.1 points, up 27.12 or 0.70%. In Paris, the CAC-40 index closed at 2,674.2 points, up 10.52 or 0.39%.

The Swiss market index closed at 4,576.97 points, up 64.42 or 1.43%. In Milan - the All Share Mibtel index closed unchanged at 11,175 points.

However, in London, the FTSE 100 closed 21.42 points lower, 0.6%, at 3,693.81, after a rally of 4.9% on Tuesday.

Banks were down: HSBC fell 6.3% , Standard Chartered dropped 1.4%, Lloyds Banking Group was 12.4%lower, but Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland rose.

Other markets

In Japan, the Nikkei posted its biggest increase in six weeks. The index gained 321.14 points, 4.6%, to end at 7,376.12.

In Hong Kong, theHang Seng Index ended 236.61 points higher, 2%, at 11,930.66 points.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 index rose 59.9 points, 1.9%, to 3,244.4 points - its highest close since 2 March. The index also rose by 1% on Tuesday.

The All Ordinaries index added 55.9 points, or 1.78%, to 3,199.1.

In New Zealand, the NZX50 index rose 35 points, or 1.4%, to 2497 on turnover of $88 million.

Top stocks were mixed: Telecom was up 3 points $2.38, Fletcher Building gained 11c to $5.26, while The Warehouse rose 17c to $3.52. Contact Energy fell 4c to close at $5.56.