A flurry of merger activity helped shares on
A spurt of takeover action has driven up investor confidence in recent days, lead by
Stockmarket experts in the US reckoned shares were beginning to look overvalued against a backdrop of economic data that has often disappointed in recent weeks. Economists point to an unusually harsh winter hitting construction, manufacturing and the labour market but they are divided over how quickly indicators will recover as the weather improves.
European shares were also at multi-year highs yesterday, helped by positive news from German businesses. The latest IFO survey showed a rise in the business climate index to 111.3, up from 106.6 - the highest in more than two-and-a-half years. But economists cautioned that the detail was not all upbeat.
"The latest increase . . . was entirely due to a further rise in the index of current conditions, with the survey measure of business expectations slipping back," said
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