Plaza shares up 2.9% on improved profitability

The equity of Plaza Centres plc kicked off this week on a positive note as its share price advanced by 2.9% to regain its 2012 high of €1.80 on a single trade of 1,450 shares. Last week, Plaza published its 2011 full-year results revealing a 6.6% rise in revenue to €2.2 million following the completion of the third extension in March 2011 which increased rentable area by 1,700 square metres. The profit after tax increased marginally to €835,461 and likewise the Directors recommended a marginal increase in the final net dividend of €0.0754 per share to all shareholders as at close of trading on 18 April. The Directors also proposed a 3-for-1 share split for approval by the shareholders at the upcoming Annual General Meeting scheduled to be held on 24 May.

On the other hand, the share price of Middlesea Insurance plc edged 1.4% lower to €0.69 despite still trading with the entitlement to the final gross dividend of €0.01 per share. This dividend is payable to all shareholders as at close of trading on 18 April.

No changes were registered in the share prices of the three other active equities. Just over 5,000 Bank of Valletta plc shares changed hands at the €2.15 level with 1,500 shares of International Hotels Investments plc trading at €0.78. Meanwhile Malta International Airport plc failed to hold on to an intra-day high of €1.70 to end the session unchanged at the €1.69 level.

On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index slid lower for the seventh consecutive session with another minimal drop to 985.531 points. Again the trend in the local MGS benchmark was not in line with the movements in eurozone yields which remained under pressure as disappointing economic data from China published over the weekend offset the optimism surrounding the successful completion of the Greek debt swap.