Thursday, 31 March 2011 11:54

Bank of Ireland slid 11% amid speculation the government  may be forced to take a controlling stake following tomorrow’s stress tests. After European markets closed, it has been revealed that three of Ireland’s biggest banks may have to raise a combined 9 billion euros ($12.7 billion) in capital. Bank of Ireland, the country’s biggest lender by market value, will seek as much as 5 billion euros. 

The yield on Portugal’s five-year bond rose as much as 25bps to 9.19% amid speculation the Iberian nation will soon need financial assistance. Portugal may revise official data for a report to be sent to the EU statistics agency, showing a wider 2010 budget deficit, the WSJ reported.

The pound rose  for the second day against the dollar, climbing 0.4%, after U.K. service companies grew the most in almost nine years in January.