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April 6, 2010    

Gem Diamonds adds over 10 percent to lead miners

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by Elaine Frei
Gem Diamonds adds over 10 percent to lead miners

European equities markets were higher Tuesday after returning from a four-day weekend to celebrate Easter.

The gains came as commodities prices rose after the US Labor Department reported that employment rose by 162,000 in March, the biggest gain in jobs in three years in the US.

The mining sector was higher, led by Gem Diamonds (LSE: GEMD) with a gain of 10.67 percent, leading winners on the 250 and in London, while Talvivaara Mining Company (LSE: TALV) added 4.19 percent, Eurasian Natural Resources (LSE: ENRC) gained 3.35 percent and Kazakhmys (LSE: KAZ) after copper traded at over $8,000 per tonne on the London Metal Exchange for the first time since 2008.

Petrofac Ltd (LSE: PFC), which provides construction and engineering services to energy companies, led gainers on the 100 as it added 6.44 percent, while oil and gas explorer Soco International (LSE: SIA) was up 6.02 percent on the 250 for the biggest rise in the energy sector.

The only decliner in the energy sector was Melrose Resources (LSE: MRS) fell 1.61 percent.

Software group Fidessa (LSE: FDSA) led the technology sector as it added 7.27 percent, but software developers were mixed as Misys (LSE: MSY) dropped 2.17 percent for the biggest decline of the session on the 250.

British Airways (LSE: BAY) fell the most on the 100, dropping 2.25 percent.

Automobile retailer Inchcape (LSE: INCH) led a mixed retail sector as it added 6.4 percent on the 250 and DIY retailer Kingfisher (LSE: KFG) added 3.09 percent on the 100, while book, newspaper and magazine retailer WH Smith (LSE: SMWH) saw the biggest decline in the sector as it dropped 0.74 percent.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was up 0.6 percent to 1,100.59 while the Dax added 0.27 percent to 6,252.21, the CAC-40 was 0.49 percent higher to 4,053.94 and the IBEX gained 0.84 percent to 11,160.6.

Most markets in the Asia-Pacific region were up on the session, but Japan’s markets were down on profit-taking and on a stronger yen, which especially hurt exporters.

The Nikkei 225 was down 0.5 percent to 11,282.32 in Tokyo, while the Topix index fell 0.49 percent to 990.79 and the Mothers market dropped 1.21 percent to 462.59.

Among exporters seeing declines, Panasonic (TYO: 6752) was 2.4 percent lower and Sony (TYO: 6758) fell 2.5 percent.

Shippers were down after significant gains last week, with Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (TYO: 9107) and Nippon Yusen (TYO: 9101) each dropping 2.1 percent while Mitsui O.S.K. Lines fell 2.8 percent on the session.

Gains in some markets were very small as the Shanghai Composite added just 0.02 percent to 3,158.68, the Sensex was up 0.03 percent to 17,941.37 and the Kospi gained 0.06 percent to 1,726.09.

The Straits Times Index was 0.24 percent higher to 2,0975.51 and the Taiex added 0.79 percent to 8,089.65.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX200 was 0.94 percent higher to 4,953.7 and the Sydney Ordinaries gained 0.98 percent to 4,974.1.

The Hang Seng was closed for a holiday in Hong Kong.

New York equities markets were lower in midday trade as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.19 percent to 10,962.91 while the S&P 500 had fallen 0.06 percent to 1,186.74 and the Nasdaq Composite was a bare 0.01 percent lower to 2,429.36.

Crude oil prices were up slightly, trading above $86 per barrel in both New York and London, while metals prices were mixed as copper dropped slightly in New York trade after going above $8,000 per tonne for the first time since 2008 in London, while silver was also lower but gold saw gains.

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