AXA’s share price soars 14% on hopes that politicians can put an end to debt crisis

European flags parliament member states europe

Investors piled into AXA, Aviva and Allianz today as confidence flooded back into the insurance sector following the euro rescue deal last night.

AXA was the biggest winner, as its share price rose 14% today. Aviva rose 8.5% and Allianz 6% on the hope that European politicians have finally begun to put an end to the continent’s debt crisis.

European politicians agreed to push through 50% losses on Greek bonds, something which will hit Allianz, although the Greek debt is only a very minor part of its capital base.

The haircut - writedown on bond losses - will be more problematic for Groupama as the Greek debt it constitutes is a much larger part of its capital base.

Heads of states agreed in Brussels today a 1 trillion euro bailout package, although full details of how this will be achieved are yet to be released.

Despite the large market gains, some commentators are warning that the measures are only a stop-gap, especially if market confidence in Italy and Spain continues to deteriorate.

European insurers hold around 151bn euros in Italian sovereign debt.