Retail shares end stronger on renewed confidence.
The FTSE 100 (UKX) remained defiantly buoyant and gained another 0.6% for a 36 point rise to end the day on 5,623 points, as falling Spanish bond yields and a fresh optimism that the eurozone countries are hopefully going to pull together after all, calmed the nerves.
The DAX gained a little, too, up 29 points to rise 0.5% to 6,392, even though it is Germany that will bear a large share of any future euro bailouts.
But indexes like these are no more than the aggregate of lots of individual shares, which it is sometimes easy to forget. Here are some of the most talked-about of today's FTSE movers...
Some nice gains
Healthcare Locums (LSE: HLO) enjoyed an early 20% rise on news that American legal action against it is to be dropped, but fell back to a 15% gain on the day, up 0.5p to 3.9p.
Video technologist Blinkx (LSE: BLNK) ended the day 7% up on 40.25p, after announcing and ad-placement partnership with news outlet Newsy.
Aer Lingus (LSE: AERL), the Irish airline, gained 18% to €1.10 on the confirmation of a new takeover bid from Ryanair Holdings (LSE: RYA). Ryanair, meanwhile, ended the day on €4.02, 1% up.
Sage Group (LSE: SGE) shares finished 14p up, for a gain of 5.5% to 268p, on news of an acquisition in Brazil.
Mixed retail news
Kesa Electricals (LSE: KESA) ended the day 2.8p (5%) down, on 52.5p. That's better than it might have been, as the ex-owner of Comet was down 9% in early trading after releasing disappointing year-end figures hit by "exceptionally difficult" European trading.
Home Retail (LSE: HOME) saw its shares fall back a little today, losing 4.9p to 87p for a fall of 5.3%. This followed yesterday's results, which showed a halt in the Argos sales decline, and boosted the price by 91p, or 23%.
There were mixed movements in the fashion trade, as Supergroup (LSE: SGP) shares gained 23p (8%) to 319p on no new tidings of its own -- though good results from H&M spurred interest in the sector. Next (LSE: NXT) was also affected, but found its shares down 6p to 3,193p.
Turning dirt into cash
It wasn't a good day for the oil and minerals exploration business, as Gold Oil (LSE: GOO) lost 0.3p for an 7.3% fall to 4.1p, after releasing a disappointing trading update.
Others include Tri-Star Resources (LSE: TSTR), down 11% to 0.7p after the release of its latest operational update, Regency Mines (LSE: RGM), down 6% to 1.65p after a laterite project update, and Petrofac (LSE: PFC) down 49p (3.3%) to 1,463p, despite becoming a selected bidder for the Mexican Pánuco project.
Even Cluff Gold (LSE: CLF), which gained 5% in early trading after a new gold discovery in Cote d'Ivoire, fell back to finish just 1% up on 68p.
But Sirius Minerals (LSE: SXX) gained 3% to 16.3p on news of a senior management appointment.
As always, today's news saw some winners and losers -- and perhaps some buying opportunities. For more share ideas, the Motley Fool's "Top Sectors For 2012" report outlines some attractive companies within three favourable industries. The report is free to all private investors -- and you can download your copy now.
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> Alan Oscroft does not own any share mentioned in this article.