Daily Market Highlights (12.07.10)

  • Local equity market in positive territory for the fourth successive session helped by upbeat investor sentiment towards HSBC and BOV. Following last Friday’s 1.1% increase, the MSE Share Index garnered a further 2.5% rise this morning to close above the 3,400-point level for the first time in over two weeks. Moreover, following the strong upturn in the share prices of the two large banks, the Index recovered all of the recent declines and is now 0.6% higher than its value of the end of 2009. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • This morning MIH announced that subscription lists closed immediately after the opening of the General Public Offering due to over-subscription. As a result the Issuer exercised its over-allotment option and increased the amount to the equivalent of €40 million. The allocation policy is expected to be announced in the coming days.
  • Sustained demand for BOV shares following last Thursday’s press conference helped BOV’s share price jump a further 5.8% to regain the €3.248 level. 8,985 shares trade today with best bids now placed at €3.201 whilst other offers still unsatisfied at the last trading price. During the press conference both the Chairman and CEO of BOV reassured the market that the Bank will comfortably surpass the stress tests invoked by the European Union. Moreover in reply to recent comments made by the Governor of the Central Bank of Malta, BOV’s Chairman categorically denied that BOV will revise its dividend policy.
  • HSBC continues to be positively affected by the reassuring comments from BOV. Share price jumps 4.1% today to close at the €3.03 level on higher volumes of over 34,000 shares. Best bids in the market at the €2.97 level whilst few other offers remain unsatisfied at the closing price. On Friday, the Bank announced that its Board of Directors will meet on 30 July to consider and approve the financial statements for the six months ended 30 June. The Directors will also consider the declaration of an interim dividend.
  • Lombard Bank and IHG Holdings edge marginally higher. A single trade of 685 Lombard shares transacted at the €2.889 level representing a 0.1% increase over the previous close. IHG regained its IPO level of €1.00 on volumes of 2,000 shares.
  • Meanwhile Middlesea Insurance fails to hold on to its 2010 high as its share price eases minimally lower to close at the €1.148 level. Over 8,600 shares changed hands today with further offers outstanding at the last traded price and best bids now pitched at the €1.03 level.
  • Almost 9,100 IHI shares traded unchanged at the €0.80 level. Last week IHI published the agenda for the upcoming Annual general Meeting. One of the resolutions on the agenda asks shareholders to empower the Directors to issue 200 million in new shares of a nominal value of €1.00. If approved the Directors could issue the shares at a price which is not below the nominal value and without first offering them to existing shareholders. A copy of the resolutions for approval at the AGM can be downloaded here.
  • FIMBank also closes unchanged at the US$1.05 level across three trades amounting to 5,300 shares with further offers unsatisfied at the closing price. The trade finance specialist is due to publish its 2010 interim results on 5 August.
  • Last Friday’s Interim Directors’ Statement published by MaltaPost failed to generate any trades in the postal operator today.  The Directors explained that the performance since 1 April to date has been in line with that recorded in the comparable period last year. Moreover the Directors do not forsee any circumstances which will impede the postal operator to achieve profitability levels in line with those reported last year.

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