Daily Market Highlights (02.08.11)

  • Share prices of the two large banks recover for the second consecutive session.  MSE Share Index up 0.7% today to 3,288.819 points. Meanwhile the other six active equities closed unchanged. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • Trading activity this morning was focused around Malta Government Stock as their prices soared in line with the further downturn in Eurozone yields to a new 9-month low of 2.44%. The drop in yields caused by fresh concerns on Italy’s ability to continue lending at sustainable rates forced the Central Bank of Malta to increased its Malta Government Stock bid prices sharply pushing the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index 0.3% higher to 984.976 points – the highest level since 20 January. Almost €5 million (nominal) of MGS changed hands during this morning’s session with the 5.25% MGS 2030 (I) accounting for 61% of total trades. Although the indicative bid price of the Central Bank was initially set at 103.29% (up 0.48 percentage points from the previous bid price), the initial trades took place at 103.19% and the price eased to a close of 102.95% in response to the substantial offers coming to the market.
  • HSBC’s equity was set to register another strong recovery as its share price was lifted to the €2.985 level. However fresh sell orders in the latter part of the session forced the equity lower to close just 0.5% higher at the €2.90 level. Fifteen trades totalling over 19,500 shares transacted today with other offers unsatisfied at the €2.90 level. Last week the Bank reported a 19.2% increase in profitability to €32.6 million and the Directors declared an interim gross dividend of €0.082 to all shareholders as at the close of trading on 5 August. Further details available here.
  • Further bids in BOV helped the equity recover by a further 2.3% to €2.69 across seven trades totalling almost 8,000 shares. Further offers unsatisfied at the closing price whilst best bids now placed at the €2.65 level. Last week, the Bank issued its Interim Statement, covering the three months ended 30 June, revealing a slower demand for credit and investment products, further fair value mark downs and loan impairments which offset the improved net interest income. Overall, the profitability for the first nine months of the current financial year is slightly below that of the previous year before accounting for the one-off cost of €14.5 million relating to the buy-back offer of the La Valette Multi-Manager Property Fund shares. Further details available here. Meanwhile, BOV reported that the offering of €40 million in Notes carrying a coupon of 4.8% and maturing in 2018 closed early due to oversubscription.
  • GO traded unchanged at the €1.299 level across two trades totalling 10,000 shares. Meanwhile, the share price of Forthnet has remained under pressure and is currently trading below the €0.40 level.
  • MIA also unchanged at the €1.60 level across three trades amounting to 2,500 shares. Last week the airport operator revealed an 11.4% increase in profitability to €3.96 million and the company maintain the net interim dividend at €0.03 per share. This dividend is payable to those shareholders as at close of trading tomorrow. Further details on the results and a copy of the MIA Interim Results may be obtained here.
  • RS2 Software maintained its 2011 high as another 4,175 shares were exchanged at the €0.55 level. Other offers outstanding at the last traded price whilst best bids now placed at the €0.53 level. The IT software company still has to announce the date of its interim results publication.
  • This afternoon Middlesea Insurance plc announced that following the special trade affected on the Malta Stock Exchange whereby Mapfre Internacional S.A. acquired 18.3 million shares from Munich Re at €0.63 per share, the Company has accepted the resignation of the Director Dr Michael Sparberg who was previously appointed by Munich Re. No replacement has been nominated as yet while details of the takeover bid to be launched by Mapfre are still forthcoming.