Dublin's ISEQ index is on track for its biggest one-day percentage gain this year, soaring more than 230 points (3.7%) this evening, boosted by optimism that a Brexit deal can be reached. 

After holding talks yesterday in the UK, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said they saw "a pathway to a possible deal". 

EU negotiator Michel Barnier and his British counterpart Stephen Barclay, meanwhile, held a "constructive" meeting today, both the British and EU sides said.

Shares in the banks jumped in Dublin this evening with AIB surging more than 13%, while Bank of Ireland was up over 11% and Permanent TSB gained 7%. 

Other shares recording strong gains included ICG, Ryanair, Cairn Home sand Dalata Hotel Group. 

Irish government bonds also rallied today, outperforming their euro zone peers on hopes that a Brexit deal was in sight.

European markets were also higher this evening, with the Frankfurt DAX jumping 2.3%, while the Paris CAC had gained 1.7% and the London FTSE index was up 0.84%.