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  • The MSE Share Index extended yesterday’s decline by a further 0.97% to close at 4,429.905 points as the losses across four of the large capitalised companies (BOV, HSBC, IHI and GO) outweighed the gains in three other equities. Moreover, the share price of Malta Properties Company continued to correct heavily after last week’s extraordinary performance. Although volumes across the equity market remained elevated at €462,000, this is the lowest level for the last six trading days. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • On the bond market, the RF MGS Index suffered its third consecutive decline (-0.14%) to close at 1,148.047 points as better-than-expected eurozone unemployment data and an encouraging manufacturing reading pushed the 10-year German Bund yield up from 0.47% yesterday to 0.52%. In the meantime, in November, German unemployment hit another record low. Overall, it seems that eurozone bond markets are already pricing in a deposit rate cut by the European Central Bank (ECB) and an increase in the size, scope and length of its bond-buying programme at the next monetary policy meeting to be held on Thursday.
  • Yesterday, Bank of Valletta plc issued an announcement advising that the closing date for any applications for the €75 million 3.50% Subordinated Notes 2030 by Preferred Applicants has been extended from 30 November to 4 December 2015 (or earlier at the discretion of BOV). The application process for other investors opens tomorrow and also closes on Friday 4 December.
  • The equity of the recently listed Malta Properties Company plc sank 23.1% as it closed at the €0.50 level across 166,179 shares. Last Tuesday, the equity commenced trading on the Malta Share Exchange. Despite the significant correction over the past three days, the equity is still up by 50.9% when compared to the value of €0.3313 per share attributable to the dividend in-kind distributed by GO plc.
  • In the banking sector, both Bank of Valletta plc and HSBC Bank Malta plc performed negatively. BOV closed 0.8% lower at the €2.291 level across 34,983 shares. The Bank will be holding its next Annual General Meeting on Thursday 17 December, during which shareholders will be asked to approve a number of resolutions including a gross final dividend of €0.085 per share (payable on the following day) and a 1 for every 12 bonus share issue.
  • On the other hand, HSBC Bank Malta plc suffered a bigger decline as it edged 2.2% lower to the €1.75 level across 37,976 shares. Last Thursday, the Bank revealed that it approved a plan to launch a voluntary early retirement scheme for its employees. The estimated cost of this one-off expense will depend on the number of applications received. Nonetheless, the Directors expect this exercise to lead to reduced profitability in the current financial year but will support an increased level of profitability and efficiency in future years.
  • The other negative performers of the day were GO plc and International Hotel Investments plc as the equities closed the day 0.3% and 3.0% lower to the €2.99 and €0.821 levels respectively albeit on relatively shallow volumes.
  • Meanwhile, the equity of FIMBank plc continued to perform strongly (up 33.3% in the last two weeks) as it advanced by 7.1% to the USD0.60 level – the highest since mid-October 2014 – across 281,300 shares.
  • Furthermore, both Malta International Airport plc and RS2 Software plc advanced by 0.2% to the €4.01 (on just 500 shares) and €3.10 (on 10,065 shares) levels respectively.

 

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