MSE Equity Price Index posts 3-day losing streak
The MSE Equity Price Index headed lower for the third successive session as it eased by a further 0.16% to 3,822.392 points. The declines in BOV, MIDI, Malita, MPC and Trident outweighed the gains in HSBC and RS2. Meanwhile, BMIT, GO, MIA and PG all traded flat as trading activity remained elevated at €0.41 million. Download today’s Equity Market Summary.
Bank of Valletta plc shed 1.1% to move back to the €0.90 level across 11,862 shares.
In the property sector, Malta Properties Company plc fell by 4.8% to an almost 2-month low of €0.50 on volumes of 45,810 shares whilst MIDI plc shed 2.4% to the €0.40 level across 2,000 shares.
Similarly, Malita Investments plc eased by 2.8% to the €0.875 level as 10,000 shares changed hands. Last Thursday, Malita published its 2020 financial results showing a 5% increase in revenues to a record €8.75 million and a pre-tax profit of €11.5 million following positive fair value movements of investment properties which amounted to €4.6 million. Furthermore, the directors are recommending the payment of a final net dividend of €0.0142 per share to all shareholders as at the close of trading on Wednesday 7 April 2021. The final dividend will be paid on Tuesday 18 May 2021 subject to shareholders’ approval at the upcoming Annual General Meeting scheduled to be held on Tuesday 11 May 2021.
Also in the same sector, Trident Estates plc declined by 0.7% to the €1.46 level across a single trade of 5,000 shares.
Elsewhere, HSBC Bank Malta plc recovered from an intraday low of €0.80 (-4.8%) to end the day 1.2% higher at the €0.85 level across a total of 61,500 shares. Shareholders as at close of trading on Thursday 18 March 2021 will be entitled to a final net dividend of €0.00754 per share payable on Monday 26 April 2021.
In the IT services sectors, RS2 Software plc inched 0.6% higher to the €1.78 level on volumes of 16,700 shares whilst BMIT Technologies plc closed unchanged at the €0.53 level across 133,450 shares. Last week, BMIT published its 2020 financial results showing a 6.4% increase in profit before tax to €7.6 million largely reflecting a greater demand for connectivity and cloud services. BMIT’s Board of Directors are recommending a final net dividend of €0.02922 per share (+35% over last year). The final net dividend will be paid on 28 May 2021 to all shareholders as at close of trading on Thursday 22 April 2021.
GO plc retained the €3.50 level across heightened activity of 52,744 shares. Last Thursday, GO published its 2020 financial results showing a 4.2% increase in revenues to a record €185.2 million as the higher contributions from the Group’s subsidiary in Cyprus – Cablenet Communications Systems plc as well as BMIT Technologies plc outweighed the marginal drop in sales from the local telecommunications segment. Overall, GO reported a 13.6% increase in profit after tax to €13.3 million. GO are recommending a record net dividend of €0.16 per share to all shareholders as at the close of trading on Friday 23 April 2021 and will be paid out on Monday 31 May 2021.
A single trade of 1,975 shares kept PG plc rooted to the €2.00 level.
Malta International Airport plc traded unchanged at its 15-week low of €5.75 across 3,890 shares.
The RF MGS Index snapped a five-day winning streak as it shed 0.07% to 1,118.468 points. The Netherlands and Ireland joined a growing list of around a dozen nations which have moved to suspend the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine over concerns about possible side effects from two of the drug maker’s batches, with reports of serious blood clotting in the legs and lungs after inoculations. AstraZeneca has since defended the vaccine, saying in a statement yesterday that more than 17 million doses have been administered in Europe and the UK, with no evidence that the shot increased the risk of blood clots. Elsewhere, the EU launched legal action against the UK in a major escalation of tensions between the two sides less than three months after Brexit was formally completed. It follows Britain’s unilateral decision to delay implementing a key part of the Brexit deal relating to Northern Ireland. The move could ultimately lead to financial penalties or trade tariffs being imposed on the UK.