BOV & GO at new highs

The share prices of Bank of Valletta plc and GO plc continued to advance this morning to new multi-month highs. BOV’s equity closed 0.6% higher at a new 20-month high of €2.278 across thirteen trades totalling 27,541 shares. This morning’s uplift mainly contributed to the Bank’s 0.8% weekly increase ahead of the imminent publication of the Interim Directors Statement which should provide an update on the Bank’s performance since the start of the current financial year on 1 October 2012.

Further support was also evident for GO’s share price as it climbed another 1.1% higher to a new 18-month high of €1.35 on volumes of 14,154 shares. The equity of the quad-play telecoms operator ended the week 4.3% higher reflecting the expected turnaround in profitability after the investment in Forthnet was practically written off in the previous year. Meanwhile, yesterday GO confirmed that merger talks between Forthnet and Wind Hellas proved inconclusive.

Malta International Airport plc shares also closed in positive territory today as the equity moved 0.8% higher to regain the €1.795 level on volumes of 10,580 shares. In spite of a third consecutive annual passenger record in 2012 and the further growth envisaged for 2013, the airport operator’s equity has failed to surpass its recent high of €1.80. The Company’s financial statements are due to be published on 20 March.

Elsewhere in the equity market, FIMBank plc held on to the US$1.02 level across nine trades totalling 65,000 shares. Yesterday, shareholders approved all the resolutions on the agenda of the Extraordinary General Meeting. As a result, the joint-offer by Burgan Bank and United Gulf Bank (UGB) has been accepted by shareholders but awaits regulatory approvals from Kuwait, Bahrain and Malta.

No change was registered in the share price of MaltaPost plc. A total of 21,756 shares traded across seven deals with the price closing unchanged at the €1.02 level. Nonetheless, the postal operator ended the week 4% higher.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index eased 0.1% lower to 1,007.504 points as benchmark 10-year Eurozone yields resumed their upward trend this morning towards the 1.7% level. However, by this afternoon, benchmark Eurozone yields eased lower after the European Central Bank announced that banks in the region will only pay back €3.5 billion in loans next week compared to the consensus estimate of €20 billion. Eurozone banks this week repaid €137 billion in 3-year loans.