MIA at new high on record passenger numbers

The equity of Malta International Airport plc jumped 1.9% during this morning’s session to a new all-time high of €2.10 following yesterday’s announcement revealing a record number of passengers during the first half of 2013. During the first six months of the year, MIA registered a 9.2% increase in passenger movements to a record 1.7 million. This growth reflects the 7.6% increase in seat capacity to 2.3 million seats as well as a 1 percentage point increase in the seat load factor to 75.1%. The airport operator is scheduled to issue its interim financial statements on 7 August.

New demand also lifted the share price of Island Hotels Group Holdings plc 5.1% higher to the €0.62 level for the first time since mid-April 2013. 11,310 shares traded today. In its latest Annual Report, it was revealed that the Group is currently seeking fresh equity to finance its upcoming capital projects including the development of the Oasis (ex-Hal Ferh site).

Meanwhile, the equities of the three retail banks ended the session unchanged. Bank of Valletta plc failed to hold on to an intra-day high of €2.275 and closed at the €2.27 level across 18,500 shares.

HSBC Bank Malta plc maintained the €2.70 level on very shallow volumes of 753 shares and, similarly, 6,400 Lombard Bank Malta plc shares traded unchanged at the €1.80 level.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index jumped 0.2% higher to a fresh 2-month high of 1,022.899 points in line with the drop in the benchmark 10-year Eurozone yield to just above the 1.65% level following yesterday’s commitment by the European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi to maintain the prevailing low rates for an extended period of time.