BOV and GO shares close higher

Following seven consecutive sessions of declines, the MSE Share Index closed 0.4% higher during this morning’s trading session to 3,221.508 points as the share prices of Bank of Valletta plc and GO plc recovered slightly.

Bank of Valletta plc recouped most of yesterday’s 2% drop which was in response to the publication of the Interim Statement on Tuesday afternoon. At the start of the day, further trades took place at the 2011 low of €2.55 but BOV’s share price edged 1.6% higher to close at €2.59 on renewed demand during the latter part of the trading session. A total of 24,989 shares traded today across 21 deals. In the Interim Statement, the Directors explained that the BOV Group’s cumulative operating profit in the first three quarters of its financial year is slightly behind that of the previous corresponding period mainly due to lower non-interest income and higher fair value mark downs and impairments. This morning BOV informed the market that the offering of €40 million in Notes carrying a coupon of 4.8% and maturing in 2018 closed early due to oversubscription.

The share price of GO plc also recovered part of the losses registered in previous days as the equity advanced by 1.6% to €1.26 level on volumes of just over 4,300 shares. The quad-play telecom operator has not yet announced the date of its 2011 interim results publication.

The only other active equity, Malta International Airport plc, closed unchanged at the €1.56 level despite the publication of the interim results yesterday evening revealing an 11.4% rise in profitability to €3.96 million. MIA also declared the payment of an unchanged interim dividend amounting to €0.03 per share to those shareholders as at close of trading on Wednesday 3 August. A copy of the Interim Report is available for download from

The negative trend across most major international stockmarkets persisted with Japan’s Nikkei plunging 1.5% this morning and the UK’s FTSE 100 currently down another 0.6%. International equity markets have performed negatively in recent days as the United States struggles to obtain approval to increase the debt ceiling in order not to default on its next payment due on 2 August. These concerns were also reflected in bond markets around the globe with yields being pushed lower on investors’ ‘flight to safety’. In Europe, 10-year benchmark yields this morning dropped back to the 2.65% level helping the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index edge 0.1% higher to 980.829 points – the highest level in almost two weeks.