3pm Markets Update

Updated: Monday 27 April 2015 15.10

US stocks opened higher on Wall Street today, extending last week's record-breaking rally at the start of a busy week that features Apple earnings and a Federal Reserve policy meeting.

The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite index rose 13 points (0.25%) to stand at 5,105, after setting a fresh record for a second day on  Friday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index advanced five points (0.25%) to 2,123, while the Dow Jones climbed 75 points (0.42%) to trade at 18,155.

European shares reversed their earlier losses and moved higher this afternoon, with persistent concerns about Greece's debt situation offset by optimism that a reshuffled Greek negotiating team would help matters.
              
London's FTSE had gained 40 points (0.56%) to stand at 7,110 while the Paris CAC rallied 64 points (1.24%) to 5,266 and the Frankfurt DAX jumped 200 points (1.69%) to trade at 12,010.

Dublin's ISEQ index was also higher this afternoon, adding 44 points (0.7%) to stand at 6,344. Shares in the banks were all higher, while Smurfit Kappa gained 1.6% to stand at €28.80 and Fyffes rose 2.6% to €1.20. Shares in Dalata Hotel Group gained 0.8% to €3.60 as it said the deal to buy the Maldron Hotel in Wexford  was complete. 

Earlier in Asian trade, Tokyo's Nikkei index closed 37 points (0.18%) lower at 19,983 while the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong gained 373 points (1.3%) to finish at 28,434, tracking a rally in Shanghai and another record close on Wall Street, with investors betting on further economic stimulus measures by China's leaders.