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  • The MSE Share Index slipped by 0.94% to 4,550.992 points today largely on the slump in the equity of IHI. Following today’s decline, the Index ended the week marginally down by 0.01%. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • On the bond market, the RF MGS Index slipped by 0.07% to 1,143.999 points as the 10-year benchmark German Bund yield advanced from a low of 0.17% yesterday to 0.25% today. In the interim, yesterday evening, the 10-year Bund briefly touched a high of 0.33% after the President of the European Central Bank (ECB) Mario Draghi played down the chances of further rate cuts. Yesterday afternoon, the ECB announced a series of additional measures aimed at strengthening the eurozone’s recovery and inflationary prospects.
  • Relatively volatile trading continued to take place in the equity of International Hotel Investments plc. Indeed, following the 6.0% decline of Wednesday and the 5.8% gain seen yesterday, the equity sunk by 8.5% today to a one-year low of €0.65 across seven deals totalling 26,841 shares.
  • Also among the large companies, HSBC Bank Malta plc briefly touched an intra-day low of €1.60 before closing at the €1.62 level, representing a decline of 0.6%. A total of 20,878 shares traded.
  • Mapfre Middlesea plc, Simonds Farsons Cisk plc and Malita Investments plc all suffered declines on shallow volumes. The insurance specialist retreated by 1.9% to the €2.50 level. Shareholders as at close of trading on Wednesday 27 April will be eligible to receive a final net dividend of €0.03826 per share, payable on 22 May 2016 subject to shareholder approval at the upcoming Annual General Meeting scheduled to be held on Friday 22 April.
  • Simonds Farsons Cisk plc and Malita Investments plc closed at €6.00 (-1.7%) and €0.968 (-0.2%) respectively. Malita shareholders as at close of trading on 22 March will be eligible to receive a final net dividend of €0.0143 per share.
  • Also in the property segment, a single deal of 32,200 shares left the equity of Malta Properties Company plc unchanged at the €0.575 level.
  • RS2 Software plc briefly touched a new all-time high of €4.06 (the fifteenth consecutive one in as many trading sessions) before closing flat at the €4.05 level. A total of 10,994 shares traded today.
  • Bank of Valletta plc maintained the €2.27 level across 14,128 shares. The deadline for submission of applications in respect of the recently announced BOV €50 million 3.5% Tranche 2 subordinated bonds 2030 issued at par (100%) is on 18 March (or earlier in the case of over-subscription).
  • Medserv plc also traded flat at the €1.645 level on volumes of 10,800 shares. The Board of Directors is scheduled to meet on Tuesday 22 March 2015 to consider and approve the financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2015.
  • Meanwhile, FIMBank plc extended yesterday’s gain by a further 1.6% to the USD0.65 level across 44,627 shares. The trade finance specialist will reveal its 2015 full-year results on 15 March.
  • GO plc advanced 0.9% to a nearly five-month high of €3.39 across 16,500 shares.
  • Malta International Airport plc (4,730 shares) and Lombard Bank Malta plc (16,935 shares) both gained 0.2% to close at €4.50 and €2.18 respectively. Yesterday, Lombard published its 2015 financial results which showed an improved net profit figure of €4.38 million, representing an increase of 30.3% from the previous year’s comparable figure. The Directors recommended the payment of a final gross dividend of €0.04 per share (net: €0.026), representing a 5% increase from the previous year’s dividend. Shareholders as at the close of trading on 23 March will be eligible to receive the dividend on 6 May subject to shareholder approval at the upcoming Annual General Meeting scheduled to be held on 28 April. The Directors are also giving shareholders the option to receive the dividend either in cash or by the issue of new shares at the attribution price of €2.18 per share.

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