FIMBank share price jumps on takeover talks

During this morning’s trading session on the Malta Stock Exchange, trading activity in FIMBank plc shares surged following yesterday’s announcement regarding the possible takeover talks by Burgan Bank. FIMBank yesterday informed the market of a possible transfer of shares amounting to 38.8% of the total issued share capital from the largest shareholder Massaleh Investments K.S.C.C. to Burgan Bank. Furthermore, Burgan Bank subsequently intends to inject new equity which will increase its potential holding to over 50% thereby initiating a Mandatory bid for the remaining shares. The above transactions are subject to the necessary approvals.

Following this announcement, FIMBank’s share price surged by 20% to a close of USD0.90 on high activity totalling 1,094,500 shares, representing 0.8% of the issued share capital. Yesterday FIMBank also issued its 2011 full-year results showing a 33.1% increase in pre-tax profits to USD8.3 million and recommended a final net dividend of USD0.02 per share and a 1 for 25 bonus share issue to all shareholders as at close of trading on 3 April.

Elsewhere in the local equity market, HSBC Bank Malta plc slid 1.5% lower to the €2.58 level as the equity turned ex dividend. Two trades amounting to 25,200 shares were executed today. The only other active equity was Lombard Bank Malta plc with its share price easing 0.4% on a small deal of 400 shares ahead of tomorrow’s 2011 full-year results publication.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index eased by 0.1% to yet another 3-month low of 984.550 points as Eurozone yields sprung above the 1.91% level for the first time in almost a month. This morning’s upturn in yields follows yesterday’s positive economic data from Germany as well as the likewise positive announcements from the US indicating that the North American economy is generally improving.