European banking shares 'on the up'

7 April 2008

Banking shares are continuing to recover on the markets, despite the ongoing credit crunch and bad debt writedowns.

The financial services sector was the top-performing sector on the continent today - with indices gaining for the second day in a row.

FTSEurofirst, the index of 300 top European shares, was up 0.8 per cent this morning at 1,328.58 points, Reuters reports.

The strong performances are leading analysts to begin to suggest that the economic downturn might not be deep or long-lasting.

"[Recovery] expectations are rebuilding with analysts...it doesn't matter whether you look at the US, Europe, the UK or globally, they've been bringing down their 2008 numbers but pushing up 2009," Dresdner Kleinwort strategist Philip Isherwood told the news agency.

Swiss bank UBS, which replaced its chairman Marcel Ospel last week after disclosing considerable exposure to the collapsed US sub-prime mortgage market, was a particular gainer.

Shares in the bank have risen 2.52 per cent to 35.98CHF.

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