12 Feb 2011

Markets up, oil down after exit of Mubarak

1:47 pm on 12 February 2011

Global markets climbed and the price of oil fell after Hosni Mubarak stepped down as president of Egypt on Friday.

There had been concerns that almost 18 days of anti-government protests could have spread across the region and added to market volatility.

But analysts said that Mr Mubarak's resignation had made Egypt's political future a little clearer, boosting investor sentiment.

Oil was trading higher earlier in the day, but fell after the announcement was made in Cairo.

While not a major oil producer, Egypt controls the Suez Canal, a major route for oil tankers and cargo ships.

The BBC reports that investors have been worried that unrest in Egypt could spread to nearby oil-producing nations, disrupting supplies.

US light sweet crude lost $US1.12 to $US85.61 per barrel. In London, Brent crude fell 31 cents to $US101.13 p/b.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones index rose 43.97 points, 0.4%, to 12,273.3 on Friday, its highest close since June 2008.

The Nasdaq index rose 0.7% to 2,809.4 points.

In London, the FTSE 100 finished 0.7% higher at 6,062.9 points. The CAC-40 in Paris and the DAX in Frankfurt also had late surges.