2.45pm Markets Update

Updated: Monday 25 May 2015 14.55

European shares fell in thin trade today while the dollar powered ahead after US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen indicated that the Fed was poised to raise interest rates this year.

Investor concerns about Greece's debt problems and a poor regional and local election result by Spain's ruling People's Party also hit European shares.

The Paris CAC had slipped 37 points (0.7%) to stand at 5,106 by 2.45pm, while Spain's IBEX sank 2.5% after the ruling People's Party took a battering in regional and local elections on Sunday. Several European markets in countries including the UK and Germany are shut today for holidays. 

But Dublin's ISEQ index managed to edge six points (0.1%) higher to stand at 5,106 this afternoon. Shares in Smurfit Kappa rose 2.3% to €28.99, while CRH was up 1.3% to €26.07. Ahead of its full year results tomorrow, Ryanair shares had dipped 0.2% to €10.88 while Origin Enterprises fell 2% to €8.40 and Fyffes lost 1.5% to trade at €1.21. 

Earlier in Asian trading, Tokyo's Nikkei climbed 149 points (0.7%) to close at 20.414 - a seventh successive rise - as a weak yen boosted exporters. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong was closed today.

Wall Street is also closed today due to the Memorial Day holiday in the US.