During this morning’s trading session on the Malta Stock Exchange, the MSE Share Index closed in negative territory for the fourth successive session of 2011. The Index shed another 0.4% to drop below the 3,700 points level reversing all the gains registered during the last trading week of December 2010.
In contrast to the trend in the final month of 2010, today’s laggards were again the two large banks which both closed lower while the equity of Malta International Airport plc was the sold positive performer of the day.
HSBC Bank Malta plc shed another 0.3% to close at the €3.16 level on volumes of almost 31,000 shares with Bank of Valletta plc slipping a further 1.3% to the €3.77 level on the penultimate day to gain entitlement to the 1 for 5 bonus share issue.
On the other hand, the share price of Malta International Airport edged 0.6% higher to regain its recent high of €1.66 on volumes of just below 7,200 shares.
The three other active equities all closed unchanged. MaltaPost plc held on to its all-time high of €1.00 on a single deal of 1,500 shares. The postal operator yesterday published its financial statements for the year ended 30 September 2010. MaltaPost registered a 7% increase in after-tax profits mainly due to growth in revenue and a lower tax charge. Subject to approval at the next Annual General Meeting to be held on 31 January, the Directors proposed a final net dividend of €0.04 per share. The dividend may be taken up in cash or in shares at the attribution price of €0.92 per share.
GO plc recovered from an intra-day low of €1.919 to maintain the €1.94 level across five trades amounting to 6,400 shares while Middlesea Insurance plc held on to the €1.00 level on activity of 9,500 shares.
The Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index slipped 0.4% lower to 990.531 points in line with the recovery in the 10-year Eurozone benchmark yield to the 2.95% level. The largest drop in the bid prices quoted by the Central Bank Malta Stockbroker was in the longest-date security. The bid price of the 5.25% MGS 2030 (I) slumped by 95 basis points to the 101.97% level.