Banks’ equities maintain respective price levels

The MSE Share Index closed this morning’s session unchanged at 3,288.819 points as the three active equities, all banks, maintained their previous closing prices. Shallow trading activity continues to characterise the local equity market with only €20,400 worth of shares traded today.

Bank of Valletta plc recovered from an intra-day low of €2.68 to close unchanged at the €2.69 level across five trades totalling 3,650 shares. Similarly, HSBC Bank Malta plc ended today’s session unchanged at the €2.90 level after recouping from an intra-day low of €2.89 on volumes of just 2,000 shares. Investors who acquire shares by Friday 5 August will be entitled to the interim gross dividend of €0.08,2 declared last week.

Over 1,800 Lombard Bank Malta plc shares trade at the €2.58 level, unchanged from the previous closing price. The Bank is scheduled to publish its 2011 half-year results on 23 August.

Trading across Malta Government Stocks also slowed down to just over €2 million despite the further increases in the bid prices of the Central Bank of Malta. This morning, yields tested new multi-month lows as markets fear that Italy and Spain (Europe’s third and fourth largest economies) could possibly require a bail out. In line with the drop in Eurozone yields to below the 2.4% level, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index climbed marginally higher to yet another 28-week high of 985.370 points. Trading was again centered around the 5.25% MGS 2030 (I) with over €1.6 million (nominal) changing hands during this morning’s session. However, due to the large supply quantities, the stock again traded below the Central Bank’s bid price of 103.35%.