Daily Market Highlights (13.05.11)

  • MSE Share Index in positive territory for the third consecutive session with a further 0.3% rise to 3,326.451 points as HSBC, GO and Middlesea trade higher to offset the marginal declines in Grand Harbour Marina and MaltaPost. Meanwhile BOV, IHI and MIA closed unchanged. During the last five sessions, the local equity benchmark edged 0.8% higher as most of the large cap equities ended the week in positive territory whilst the only three negative performing equities in the small-cap category. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index edged minimally below the 975 points level but still ended the week 0.1% higher. All subscriptions with respect to the new Malta Government Stock Issues are now closed. The Treasury is expected to publish the respective issue statistics later on this afternoon.
  • During this morning’s session, HSBC’s share price was lifted 0.7% higher to €2.96 across three trades totalling 16,200 shares. Immediately after the closing of today’s session, the bank published its Interim Statement which revealed a continued positive performance since the start of the year. The Directors explained that the Bank generated higher income levels but also incurred more costs due to the on-going business expansion and transformation. The Bank also incurred higher loan impairments but not as much as forecasted. In conclusion the Directors reiterated that HSBC Malta maintained a strong liquidity, a stable loan-to-deposit ratio together with capital ratios which are well above regulatory requirements. HSBC’s equity ended the week 0.3% higher.
  • Meanwhile BOV maintained the gains registered earlier this week as a further 16,449 shares changed hands at the €2.82 level, representing a weekly rise of 0.7%. Further offers unsatisfied at the closing price whilst best bids now pitched at the €2.81 level. The Bank is scheduled to pay the recently announced net interim dividend of €0.0406 per share on 26 May.
  • A single trade of 1,000 Middlesea shares transacted at the €1.04 level in anticipation of Mapfre Internacional’s mandatory bid referred to in the Middlesea announcement of 29 April. Further details on this acquisition and mandatory bid available here. BOV, which owns 31.08% of Middlesea, has already declared that it will not accept the bid of Mapfre.
  • GO’s share price up a further 0.8% rise to regain the €1.35 level across ten trades totalling 10,550 shares. Following three consecutive sessions of increases, GO ended the week 4.7% higher – the first weekly positive performance in sixteen weeks. Despite the recent upturn, this share price still remains 30.2% below its value at the beginning of the year. Recently the Group published its Interim Statement revealing increased overall revenue and operating profits from local operations. However the Group failed to give any indication with respect to the financial performance and position of Forthnet, in which it has a substantial investment through its subsidiary Forgendo. Further details available here.
  • No changes in the share prices of IHI and MIA. IHI continued to trade at the €0.70 level with a total of 70,000 shares changing hands today. Increased volumes also evident in MIA as over 20,500 shares were exchanged at the €1.68 level representing a 1.8% rise over the week.
  • Grand Harbour Marina shares active for the first time since October 2010. A small deal of 110 shares executed during this morning’s session at the €1.967 representing a 0.7% drop from the previous closing price.
  • MaltaPost also in negative territory as its share price eased 0.9% lower back to the €1.07 level. Low volumes of 500 shares changed hands today with further offers unsatisfied at the last traded price whilst best bid still pitched at the €1.02 level. Yesterday, MaltaPost published its interim results covering the six months ended 31 March 2011. The postal operator reported a 1.4% increase in revenue to €10.7 million on the back of continued growth in parcel volumes. However, the Company’s profits marginally declined from €1.2 million for the six months ended 31 March 2010 to €1.1 million during the period under review. This drop was due to the increases in mail costs, utility bills and information systems support costs. Similar to previous years, the Directors did not recommend an interim dividend. Further details available here.