Italy’s benchmark FTSE MIB Index increased for a second day, gaining 488.03, or 2.5 percent, to 20,054.09 at the 5:30 p.m. close in Milan.
The following stocks were among the most active in the Italian market today.
Atlantia SpA (ATL IM) rose 2.1 percent to 15.4 euros, the biggest gain in almost two months. Exane BNP Paribas lifted its price estimate on Italy’s largest toll road operator by 12 percent to 19 euros and reiterated an “outperform” rating.
Azimut Holding SpA (AZM IM), Italy’s largest independent fund manager, gained for a second day, rising 2.8 percent to 6.43 euros, as the Stoxx Europe 600 Index extended its biggest rally in three months.
Buzzi Unicem SpA (BZU IM), Italy’s second-biggest cement maker, increased 4.9 percent to 7.76 euros. “We believe we are approaching the trough of the construction cycle,” Kepler Capital Markets wrote in a note on the European industry. “While non-residential is still likely to be down in 2011 and public works could remain subdued for 2-3 years, residential is picking up. Investors rightly neglected the sector over the last three years, but it now offers an excellent risk/reward ratio.” Italcementi SpA (IT IM), the country’s largest cement maker, gained 5 percent to 5.65 euros.
Danieli SpA (DAN IM) surged 5.6 percent to 21.63 euros, the biggest gain in two weeks. Exane BNP Paribas upgraded Italy’s biggest maker of equipment for the steel industry to “outperform” from “neutral,” saying in a note that climbing steel prices and demand from emerging markets should fuel orders.
ERG SpA (ERG IM) rose 3.3 percent to 10.06 euros, its third consecutive gain. The refiner had its price estimate increased to 12 euros from 11.40 euros at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which said in a note that “we are now forecasting a much better refinery utilization rate profile over the medium term than before.”
Iren SpA (IRE IM) advanced 4.7 percent to 1.19 euros as Deutsche Bank AG initiated coverage of the municipal electricity producer with a “buy” rating “due to its long-term asset base, the growing regulated business with room for synergies and the potential to successfully exploit M&A,” the brokerage said in a note.
Saipem SpA (SPM IM) rose 4.7 percent to 34.48 euros, the steepest increase since May. Goldman Sachs increased its price projection on Europe’s largest oil-services provider to 43.60 euros from 40 euros and reiterated its “buy” recommendation.
Saras SpA (SRS IM) climbed 8.3 percent to 1.49 euros, the stock’s second increase. Goldman Sachs lifted its recommendation on the owner of the largest oil refinery in the Mediterranean to “neutral” from “sell.”
Trevi Finanziaria SpA (TFI IM) surged 2.8 percent to 9.88 euros, the highest price in three weeks. Mediobanca Securities upgraded the provider of excavation services to “outperform” from “neutral,” while trimming its price estimate to 12 euros from 12.2 euros.
UniCredit SpA (UCG IM) rose 4 percent to 1.65 euros, extending yesterday’s gain. Italy’s biggest bank plans to open 900 branches in central and eastern Europe in the next five years to tap faster growing markets. UniCredit is “ready to finance” its expansion, “leveraging on strong capital positioning and solid funding,” the Italian bank said.
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