11am Markets UpdateUpdated: Wednesday 01 April 2015 11.36
European shares reversed early losses and rose this morning, starting the new quarter on a positive note, helped by data showing manufacturing activity across the euro zone accelerated faster than previously thought last month.
London's FTSE had gained 76 points (1.1%) to stand at 6,849 by 11am, while the Paris CAC rose by 64 points (1.3%) to 5,098 and the Frankfurt DAX moved 124 points (1%) to trade at 12,090.
Dublin's ISEQ index was also higher this morning, adding 31 points (0.5%) to stand at 6,050. Shares in Smurfit Kappa rose 2.8% to €26.89, while Kingspan climbed 2.1% to €18.02. Shares in Datalex gained 1% to €1.87 while Ryanair was up 0.7% to trade at €11.21.
Tokyo's Nikkei index lost 172 points (0.9%) to finish at 19,035 after a disappointing business confidence survey showed Japanese firms are increasingly pessimistic about a rebound in the world's number three economy. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong rose by 182 points (0.7%) to finish at 25,083 after an official gauge of Chinese manufacturing activity rebounded in March.
US stocks fell on Wall Street last night as energy and healthcare shares retreated, but the S&P 500 and Nasdaq registered their ninth quarterly advance in a row. The S&P's 500 quarterly winning streak was its longest since 1998, while the Nasdaq's was its longest ever. The Dow registered a slight loss for the quarter.
The Dow Jones fell 200 points (1.1%) to finish at 17,776, while the S&P 500 lost 18 points (0.88%) to close at 2,068 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 47 points (0.9%) to end at 4,901.