Philip O'Sullivan's Market Musings

Financial analysis from Dublin, Ireland

Market Musings 9/1/2012

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Newsflow is still light enough, which is good news from the perspective of getting some articles written for Business & Finance and also in terms of getting ready for my return to Smurfit for the start of the new term.

 

(Disclaimer: I am a shareholder in Independent News & Media plc) I was interested to read that legendary Irish investor Dermot Desmond has been increasing his shareholding in INM. This confirms press reports before Christmas.

 

(Disclaimer: I am a shareholder in Ryanair plc and Irish Continental Group plc) In the transport sector, Aer Lingus announced that it carried 9.775m passengers last year, a 0.5% increase on year-earlier levels. This performance, against the backdrop of a very weak Irish economy, is a credit to the yield and traffic optimisation measures implemented by CEO Christoph Mueller. Its Irish peer Ryanair made some encouraging comments at Davy’s New York conference, as did marine transport group ICG.

 

Given my previous remarks about Ireland’s glut of airports, you can imagine how I felt on reading that only 110 people a day use State-subsidised Donegal Airport. Yet another example of taxpayers’ money being well spent by politicians!

 

Switching to retail, this morning brought yet another grim update from HMV, which said that HMV Retail’s like-for-like sales were -9.8% in the 9 weeks to 31 December.

 

In the pharma space, Irish microcap AGI Therapeutics announced that it has received a recommended cash offer from Aravis today. Elsewhere, CRO Icon inked a partnership deal with Shire.

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Written by Philip O'Sullivan

January 9, 2012 at 11:07 am

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