Local equity trading at a 5-week high

Trading volumes continued to grow during this morning’s session with €0.46 million worth of shares changed hands – the highest level in the past 5 weeks. Amid the growing trading activity, the MSE Share Index recovered some of yesterday’s 2.5% drop with a 0.2% increase to 3,594.079 points as most of the active equities closed higher.

In the financial services sector, the share price of Bank of Valletta plc advanced for the sixth consecutive session to yet another 6-year high of €2.70 on sustained high volumes of 76,235 shares. The equity will continue to trade with the entitlement to the 1 for 10 bonus issue until Tuesday 14 January.

Lombard Bank Malta plc and FIMBank plc also moved higher albeit on much lower volumes. Lombard Bank edged 2.2% higher to €1.85 with FIMBank up 1% to USD0.985. Shareholders of FIMBank have until Monday 20 January to accept the offer of Burgan Bank and United Gulf Bank should they wish to sell all or part of their holdings at the price of USD0.95 per share.

GO plc’s equity inch a further 0.3% higher to close at its 3-year high of €1.86 across two deals totalling 9,000 shares.

Among the smaller companies, Plaza Centres plc rebounded by 3.5% to regain its 2013 high of €0.60 across three trades totalling 24,000 shares. Similarly, the equity of Medserv plc moved 1.6% higher to recapture the €1.30 level on volumes of 38,000 shares.

Following three months of inactivity, the equity of Grand Harbour Marina plc traded again with 6,195 shares changing hands at the €1.85 level representing a 1.7% increase over the previous close.

Meanwhile, no changes were registered in the share prices of the other six active equities. HSBC Bank Malta plc held on to the €2.585 level across five deals totalling 22,800 shares. Likewise, Malta International Airport plc maintained the €2.18 level on a deal of 1,400 shares. High volumes were sustained in Tigné Mall plc with a further 135,000 shares trading at the €0.515 level. Lower volumes were registered in Island Hotels Group Holdings plc, RS2 Software plc and MaltaPost plc. The postal operator is scheduled to hold its Annual General Meeting on 15 January.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index climbed a further 0.1% to regain the 1,021.116 points as Eurozone yields dipped to a new 3-week low of 1.89%. This follows a surprise drop in eurozone inflation which reignited fears over deflationary pressures across the region.