HSBC’s 4-day positive run halted

Following four consecutive days of gains, the share price of HSBC Bank Malta plc eased 0.1% lower to €2.895 across three trades totalling 21,282 shares. The Bank’s equity has rallied by 16.7% in the last four weeks on sustained demand for these shares ahead of the Bank’s interim results publication and the interim dividend declaration scheduled for this Friday 27 July.

Meanwhile, Bank of Valletta plc moved in the opposite direction as it reversed yesterday’s 1.4% decline with a 1.5% rise to regain the €2.09 level across seven trades totalling 10,360 shares. Yesterday, BOV announced the appointment of Mr Frederick Mifsud Bonnici as the new Chairman.

GO plc and Malta International Airport plc shares also closed in positive territory with the quad play telecom operator rising 1% to the €1.06 level on volumes 3,000 shares. MIA’s share price edged 0.3% to close at the €1.785 level (minimally below the equity’s 2012 high of €1.79) across four deals totalling 28,750. The airport operator shares turn ex-dividend as from tomorrow.

On the other hand, MIDI plc slid a further 3.3% to a new all-time low of €0.29 on volumes of 60,000 shares. Similarly, FIMBank plc retreated by 1.2% to the US$0.85 level across 6,179 shares as investors await further developments in respect of the possible takeover by Burgan Bank.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index eased by 0.1% to 992.097 points reflecting this morning’s marginal increase in Eurozone yields. By this afternoon, the benchmark 10-year German Bund yields surged to the 1.3% level after EU officials stated that it is highly likely that more Greek debt will need to be restructured as the country will not be able to meet the bailout conditions. This triggered fresh speculation that Greece will have to exit the euro which in turn will negatively impact the already ailing Eurozone countries, namely Spain and Italy. Moreover, German statistics issued today revealed that German business confidence is at its lowest level in more than two years highlighting the slowdown in Europe’s principal economy and its weakening defences against the prevailing crises in the region.