MaltaPost share price at new 3-year low

The share price of MaltaPost plc slumped by 18.2% today to drop to a new 3-year low of €0.63 on a single trade of 19,412 shares. In May, the postal operator revealed a 54.5% drop in profitability to €0.5 million as the Company’s income and costs were negatively impacted by the changes in the tariff structure of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) for cross border mail with effect from 1 January 2012. Subsequently, on 17 August, MaltaPost announced that the downward trend in profitability continued during the second half of its financial year and the Directors believe that this trend will persist and even accelerate in future financial periods and until such time as the regulatory framework within which the Company operates is definitely and adequately revised. In this respect, MaltaPost is working closely with the Malta Communications Authority (MCA) to ensure the adoption of a fair and regulatory approach to its public tariffs.

Bank of Valletta plc shed some of its recent gains as the equity eased 0.9% lower to €2.28 on volumes of 37,200 shares. Meanwhile, the only other active equity, GO plc, ended the session unchanged at the equity’s 3-month low of €0.85 across two trades totalling 11,200 shares.

No trades were executed in the shares of MIDI plc, FIMBank plc and RS2 Software plc following the publication of their respective interim results. MIDI reported a loss of €1.05 million as a result of the very limited stock of properties available for sale. The trade finance specialist reported a 11.4% rise in net profits to USD4.5 million after achieving cost savings of over USD1 million while, RS2 Software revealed a 12.6% drop in profitability to €1.2 million reflecting the lower level of licence sales compared to the significant amount concluded in the first half of 2011. RS2 however stated that it is still in advanced negotiations for new licences which should be concluded by the year-end. Various other companies are expected to publish their half-year report by the end of this week.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index drifted lower for the third consecutive day with another marginal drop to 997.524 points as the Central Bank of Malta stockbroker lowered most of the MGS bid prices. However, this is in contrast to the further drop in Eurozone yields which slid closer towards the 1.30% level as the differing views of the various policy makers in respect of the best action to take to counteract the prevailing Eurozone sovereign debt crises increases uncertainty amongst investors.