US and British markets boom as Brexit blues ease

Stocks are at an all-time high across the Atlantic...

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Richard Drew / AP

The S&P 500 index of shares in the US closed 0.3% higher last night at an all time high of 2,137. US shares generally have been boosted by very strong June job numbers in the US – which were published last Friday.

Positive employment data could speed-up a Fed rate hike - although it has indicated that this process will be slowed by the UK's decision to leave the EU.

Shares have been supported by speculation that the Bank of England intends to cut interest rates from 0.5% to 0.25% on Thursday and other commitments from European central banks to provide stimulation.

The FTSE 100 entered bull market territory yesterday as Theresa May became the only candidate remaining in the race to replace David Cameron as the UK's PM.

British stocks are 20% higher than they were when record lows were recorded in February.

Ireland's ISEQ closed up 109 at 5,689.

Results

Two publicly-quoted, construction-related firms warning of the impact of Brexit this morning. In a trading statement, builders merchants and DIY Group Grafton said its turnover rose by more than 13% in the six months to the end of June to £1.2bn.

The firm, which owns the Woodies and Chadwicks outlets here in Ireland generates the bulk of its earnings in sterling and warns that following a slowdown in UK trading in the months prior to the vote.

House-building group, Abbey, enjoyed a strong 25% increase in pre-tax profits in the year to April to €61.5m, boosted in particular by its activities in the UK.

It warns, "A prolonged period of gradual relative decline for London and South East England is possible if the withdrawal of London from its role in Europe is carried through... The impact of Brexit will emerge over future reporting periods but there is no doubt that the referendum outcome is a material short term negative shock."