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Wednesday 13th of May 2009
January 21, 2009

Royal Bank of Scotland adds 21 percent

by Elaine Frei
Royal Bank of Scotland adds 21 percent

European equities markets were mixed Wednesday.

In London, the FTSE 100 was down 0.77 percent to 4,059.88 but the FTSE 250 added 0.28 percent to 6,159.5.

Banks were mostly higher, with RBS (LSE: RBS; NYSE: RBS PRM) leading winners on the 100 as it added 21.36 percent even as Barclays Bank (LSE: BARC; NYSE: BCS; TYO: 8642) topped losers on the index, dropping 9.33 percent on the session.

The FTSE Eurofirst 300 was down 0.94 percent to 767.23 while the IBEX fell 0.55 percent to 8,230.7 and the CAC-40 dropped 0.67 percent to 2,905.57 but the Dax added 0.5 percent to 4,261.15 in Frankfurt.

Asia-Pacific markets were mostly lower again on concerns that losses by banks will make the recession worse and cause it to last longer.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 was down 2.04 percent to 7,901.64 while the Topix index fell 2.22 percent to 787.15 and the Mothers market of small and mid-caps dropped 1.59 percent to 324.63.

In Australia the Sydney Ordinaries dropped 0.88 percent to 3,394.8 while the S&P/ASX200 was down 0.97 percent to 3,442.8 as the Australian government renewed a ban, originally due to expire next Tuesday, on the short selling of financial shares.

Elsewhere in the region the Shanghai Composite was down 0.46 percent to 1,985.02 while the Straits Times Index fell 1.09 percent to 1,704.52, the Kospi was 2.06 percent lower to 1,103.61, the Hang Seng was down 2.9 percent to 12,583.63 and the Sensex dropped 3.53 percent to 8,779.17.

In Taiwan, the Taiex managed a gain of 0.13 percent to 4,247.97.

At just past 1 p.m. in New York the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.22 percent to 8,045.94 while the Nasdaq Composite had added 1.56 percent to 1,463.31 and the S&P 500 had gained 1.47 percent to 817.06.

Crude oil prices were higher, but most metals saw declines on the session.

The pound was weaker after comments from Bank of England governor Mervyn King.

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