Irish stock market trading turnover slumps 30% in February after CRH and Flutter exits

Irish equities trading turnover last month equated to a daily average of €183.3m, down from €261.3m a year ago

The average daily value of shares traded on Euronext Dublin, which operates the Irish stock market, plunged by 30 per cent on the year in February, following the exits of heavyweight groups CRH and Flutter Entertainment from the market over the previous five months.

Irish equities trading turnover last month equated to a daily average of €183.3 million, according to figures on Euronext’s website. The figure for February last year was €261.3 million.

The pace of decline, however, was alleviated by the fact that share values had risen over the 12 months through February. The Iseq All-Share index has advanced more than 15 per cent over the period.

CRH, the long-standing largest company on the Iseq, quit the Irish market last September as part of a listings overhaul during which it moved its main quotation from London to New York. It aimed to access a more liquid market, where companies typically trade at a premium to European businesses, relative to earnings, and boost CRH’s ability to secure lucrative contracts under a $1.2 trillion (€1.1trillion) US infrastructure programme to run until 2026.


CRH generates three-quarters of its earnings in North America. Shares in the company have jumped by more than 50 per cent on Wall Street since the move, helped by a strong earnings report for 2024, released on Thursday.

Bookmaker Paddy Power’s Flutter Entertainment, which briefly succeeded CRH as the number-one group on the Dublin market, cancelled its listing in late January as it took out a quotation from the New York Stock Exchange. Flutter plans to seek shareholder approval at its annual general meeting in May to make the US, home to its fastest-growing business, FanDuel, the location of its primary listing during the summer.

The average daily number of stock trades in Dublin fell by 33 per cent to 17,971 in February from the same month last year, according to Euronext data.

Trading volumes in Dublin are on track to be hit further later this year as cardboard box-maker Smurfit Kappa, another Iseq bellwether, plans to exit the market as part of a merger with US peer WestRock to create a firm with $34 billion of annual sales.

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All three companies plan to remain incorporated, headquartered and tax resident in Ireland.

The exodus of large companies from the market contributed to the Republic’s two largest securities firms, Davy and Goodbody Stockbrokers, each shedding jobs in their capital businesses in the past six months.

The departures from the Iseq are echoed by recent developments in London. Miner BHP and plumbing supplier Ferguson quit the FTSE 100 in 2022 for primary listings in Sydney and New York, respectively. UK computer chip designer Arm shunned London last year to pursue an initial public offering and flotation on the Nasdaq.

Shareholders in package holiday operator Tui voted last month to abandon the London Stock Exchange in favour of listing its shares solely in Frankfurt. UK pollster YouGov has also threatened to shift its listing from London to New York.

Joe Brennan

Joe Brennan

Joe Brennan is Markets Correspondent of The Irish Times