Daily Market Highlights (03.05.11)

  • Following three sessions of positive performances, the local equity market returns back to negative territory. MSE Share Index down 0.3% back to 3,356.894 points as declines in HSBC and Lombard offset the increases in GO and Middlesea. On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index eased 0.1% lower to 975.399 points in line with the minimal increase in Eurozone yields. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • Share price of Middlesea Insurance plc gains further ground ahead of the mandatory bid expected to be launched by Mapfre Internacional shortly. Last Friday Middlesea announced that Mapfre agreed to acquire Munich Re’s 19.9% shareholding at an undisclosed price. If this is approved by the regulator, Mapfre will own more than 50% of Middlesea triggering a mandatory bid for the remaining shares whereby all other shareholders in Middlesea will become entitled (but not obliged) to sell their shareholding to Mapfre at the Mandatory Bid price which still has to be determined. BOV, which currently holds 31.08% of Middlesea, has agreed with Mapfre that it will not tender its shares under the Mandatory Bid. The announcement also reveals that Mapfre is in discussions with the relevant authorities to allow the shares to remain listed on the Official List of the Malta Stock Exchange. Middlesea’s equity moved a further 2.2% higher this morning to reclaim the €0.95 level on volumes of 3,840 shares.
  • HSBC reversed yesterday’s 1.3% rise as its share price retreated back to the €3.00 level today. Just over 27,800 shares change hands today with further bids unsatisfied at the closing price whilst lowest offers now placed at the €3.12 level.
  • BOV maintained the €2.89 level after easing from an intra-day high of €2.899 on eighteen trades totalling over 32,000 shares. Last Friday the Bank published the financial statements for the six months ended 31 March 2011 revealing a net profit figure of €30.3 million, 3.8% higher than the €29.2 million recorded in the comparative period in 2010. The Directors declared an unchanged gross interim dividend of €0.0625 per share (net: €0.0406 per share) to those shareholders as at close of trading on Monday 9 May 2011. Further details on results are available here.
  • Lombard shares active for the first time in almost three weeks with its share price declining by 0.5% to €2.935 level on low volumes of 1,000 shares. Other offers unsatisfied at the closing price whilst best bids now placed at the €2.75 level. The Bank is due to pay the €0.115 gross dividend per share on 6 May as approved at the recent Annual General Meeting.
  • After four consecutive sessions of declines, GO’s share price moves 0.7% higher to the €1.339 level. Almost 40,000 shares exchanged today with further offers unsatisfied at the closing price whilst best bids pitched at the €1.32 level. Tomorrow marks the dividend cut off date.
  • RS2 Software held on to the €0.50 level across four trades amounting to 22,500 shares. Investors have until 10 May to gain entitlement to the net dividend of €0.032 per share. Further details of results available here.