Daily Market Highlights (07.04.2017)

  • The MSE Share Index erased most of the gains registered in the previous two trading sessions as it today slipped by 0.27% back to 4,703.726 points. MIA, RS2 and Malta Properties closed this morning’s session in negative territory whilst a further five equities finished the day unchanged. Week-on-week, the local equity benchmark dropped by 0.31% driven by the declines in the share prices of MIA (-3.5%), FIMBank (-3.5%) and MIDI (-6.1%). Download a copy today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • On the bond market, the RF MGS Index climbed by a minimal 0.01% to 1,125.712 points. Euro zone sovereign yields continued to slide as comments made by Peter Praet, who is the European Central Bank’s (ECB) chief economist and a member of its Executive Board, weighed on investor sentiment. Mr Praet supported previous remarks made by ECB President Mario Draghi that it is too early to discuss any possible further reduction in the size of the ECB’s quantitative-easing programme. Furthermore, the most recent escalation of tensions in Syria’s civil war stimulated demand for safe-haven assets.
  • Malta International Airport plc shed 2.4% today as it slipped back to a near two-month low of €4.09 after turning ex-dividend. A total of 7,300 changed hands. The airport operator is due to hold its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 10 May 2017.
  • RS2 Software plc also retreated by 1.2% to the €1.601 level today after opening at an intra-day high of €1.645 across a total of 20,100 shares.
  • The other negative performing equity today was Malta Properties Company plc which eased by 0.5% from its four-week high of €0.548 to the €0.545 level on volumes of 56,180 shares.
  • Meanwhile, MIDI plc maintained its 22-month low of €0.31 on trivial volumes. The Company is due to reveal its 2016 financial results on 20 April.
  • Shallow trading activity also took place in the equities of Simonds Farsons Cisk plc and HSBC Bank Malta plc which closed unchanged at the €7.20 and €2.08 levels respectively. HSBC is due to hold its AGM next Thursday 13 April 2017.
  • A single deal of 8,000 shares of Lombard Bank Malta plc was executed at the equity’s six-year high of €2.499, representing no change from the previous closing price. Yesterday, the Bank issued an announcement containing all the resolutions to be presented for the consideration and approval by shareholders during the upcoming AGM scheduled to be held on 27 April 2017, including a number of special business resolutions concerning the shareholding and the share capital structure of Lombard. The Directors noted that the sale process for the disposal of the 49.01% shareholding in Lombard held by Cyprus Popular Bank (CPB) has recently been launched. The Board further explained that it would be in the interest of the Bank and all its stakeholders to participate in this process with a view to possibly acquiring the CPB shareholding. In fact, the Bank has lodged an expression of interest and on 5 April 2017 submitted its indicative offer in terms of the sale process.
  • Similarly, Bank of Valletta plc held on to its over nine-year high of €2.21 across 25,250 shares.