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09th of August 2011
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EasyJet adds nearly 18 percent on outlook

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by Elaine Frei
EasyJet adds nearly 18 percent on outlook

European markets were higher Friday after the European Union agreed on Thursday to a new plan to help debt-plagued Greece.

The FTSE 100 was up 0.6 percent to 5,935.02 in London, while the FTSE 250 added 0.97 percent to 11,820.3 as most primarily saw gains but most homebuilders were lower.

The travel and leisure sector, which only saw three decliners, provided both the biggest gainer and the biggest loser on the 250 as easyJet (LSE: EZJ) added 17.68 to lead winners after it said annual earnings will be better than expected on business bookings that were up 20 percent, but Bwin.party Digital Entertainment (LSE: BPTY) dropped 3.36 percent as the biggest decliner in the sector and on the index.

Other travel-related shares were up, including a gain of 5.88 percent for travel agent Thomas Cook Group (LSE: TCG), while International Consolidated Airlines Group (LSE: IAG) added 2.19 percent.

Gold and silver miner Fresnillo (LSE: FRES) was up 2.25 percent to lead gains on the 100, while drug maker AstraZeneca (LSE: AZN) was the worst performer on the index as it ddropped 1.23 percent.

Banks were mixed as Royal Bank of Scotland Group (LSE: RBS) tied Fresnillo for the top spot on the winners list on the 100 with a gain of 2.25 percent, while Standard Chartered (LSE: STAN) was the worst-performing bank as it droped 0.95 percent.

Aviva (LSE: AV) added 1.29 percent in a mostly higher insurance sector on media reports that Zurich Financial Services (SIX: ZURN) could bid on the insurer.

The chemicals and food and beverage sectors had just one declner each, while all utilities were higher and the media and telecommunications sector each saw just two declines.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was up 0.45 percent to 1,108.12 while the IBEX added 0.42 percent to 10,059.3, the Dax was 0.5 percent higher to 7,326.39 and the CAC-40 gained 0.68 percent to 3,842.7.

Markets in Asia and the Pacific region were higher on the news that the European Union has agreed to more aid for Greece and on hopes that an agreement is near on the debt ceiling in the United States.

The Nikkei 225 was up 1.22 percent to 10,132.1 in Tokyo, while the Topix index added 1.01 percent to 868.81 but the Mothers market was 0.61 percent lower to 478.31, with banks helped by the news of the new plan for Greece as Mitsubishi UFJ (TYO: 8306) added 3.3 percent and was helped by a media report that probably saw net income double in the quarter ended in June, while Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (TYO: 8316) was up 3.6 percent.

Medical device manufacturer Terumo Corp (TYO: 4543) was up 1.3 percent on reports that it might have seen record profits in its fiscal first quarter, while exporters were up including an 0.8 percent gain for Toyota Motor (TYO: 7203) while consumer electronics maker Sony (TYO: 6758) was up 1.1 percent and camera and copier maker Canon (TYO: 7751) added 1.3 percent.

The Shanghai Composite was up 0.18 percent to 2,770.79, Taiwan’s Taiex added 0.55 percent to 8,765.32, Australia’s markets were higher as the S&P/ASX200 added 1.03 percent to 4,602.9 and the Sydney Ordinaries gained 1.04 percent to 4,674.1, the Kospi was up 1.22 percent to 2,171.23 in South Korea, Singapore’s Straits Times Index added 1.42 percent to 3,182.95, the Sensex was 1.55 percent higher to 18,722.3 in India and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 2.08 percent to 22,444.8.

New York equities markets were mixed at just before 1 p.m. local time as the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.17 percent to 12,702.5 but the S&P 500 had added 0.12 percent to 1,345.4 and the Nasdaq Composite was 0.79 percent higher to 2,856.91.

Crude oil prices were higher in midday trade in New York, with September contracts for West Texas Intermediat crude up 57 cents to $99.70 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange while the latest reports had Brent crude up $1 to $118.51 per barrel.

The price of gold was up $15 in New York trade to $1,602 per troy ounce at midday, while silver had added $1.53 to $40.10 per troy ounce and copper gained 2 cents to $4.40 per pound.

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