Daily Market Highlights (20.01.10)

  • Local equity market rally persists with the MSE Share Index closing just below its level at the time of the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers in September 2008. Index rises by a further 1.3% to a fresh 16-month high of 3,956.286 points as BOV and HSBC continue to trade higher with IHI regaining the €0.80 level. MIA, Middlesea Insurance and Crimsonwing also in positive territory whilst another four equities closed unchanged. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • Sustained demand for BOV shares lifts the equity higher for the fifth consecutive session. BOV climbed by a further 1.9% to a new 21-month high of €3.76 on high volumes of 22,490 shares. Earlier this week Fitch Ratings confirmed the Bank’s long-term rating at ‘A-‘ with a stable outlook. In its report, Fitch stated that BOV’s rating reflects it conservative management, satisfactory liquidity and healthy capital ratios. Fitch reported that the rating also factors in the Bank’s historically weak asset quality by international standards, although it has been improving in recent years, and its reliance on Malta’s small economy. Further details on the rating confirmation is available here.
  • HSBC rises 0.5% to regain the €4.00 level after touching its 2010 high of €4.05. Almost 48,000 share change hands during this morning’s session with further offers outstanding at the close price and best bids at €3.98. The Bank is shortly expected to publish its 2009 full-year results and declare a final dividend to shareholders.
  • IHI starts to recover from its recent lows as the share price edges 3.6% higher to the €0.80 level. Just under 11,800 shares trade today with best bids at €0.765 whilst further offers remain unsatisfied at the last closing price.
  • GO maintains the €2.27 level on low volumes of 2,100 shares with further offers remaining unsatisfied at the last trading price. On Monday the Greek company Forthnet in which GO has an indirect shareholding announced that it is proceeding with the operational integration of the fixed telecommunications business (branded Forthnet) and the pay television business (NOVA) in order to improve its service and achieve further operational efficiency.
  • Middlesea Insurance equity trades limit up for the second consecutive session. A single trade of 3,360 shares executed at €0.778, representing a 6.9% gain from yesterday’s close and helping the equity recover from last week’s substantial losses. Early last week the insurance company announced a marked deterioration in claims at the Group’s Italian subsidiary Progress Assicurazioni during the last quarter of 2009. Following this sour news, the equity slumped 30% from a high of €1.00 (reached on 11 January 2010) but has since recovered by 11.1%. Further details on the announcement available here.
  • Intensified interest in MIA shares help the equity jump by a further 3.7% to yet another fresh 15-month high of €2.80. Volumes remain low with only 2,990 shares changing hands. On Monday MIA’s CEO Mr. Julian Jaeger announced a 6.1% yearly decline in passenger movements in 2009 when compared to the number of passengers in 2008. This represents an improvement from the 2009 forecast of a 6.8% decline in passenger movements provided by the company in July 2009. Moreover Mr. Jaeger announced that the Company is forecasting a 2.8% growth in passenger movements for 2010 based on the new routes for 2010 which will be operated by Easyjet, Ryanair, BMI and Norwegian. Further details of the statistics available here.
  • Crimsonwing on the increase for the second consecutive session. Share price edges a further 4.4% higher to close at the €0.428 level on a single trade of just 673 shares.
  • A single trade of over 13,000 MaltaPost shares transacted at an unchanged level of €0.749 ahead of tomorrow’s full-year results publication and dividend announcement.
  • Lombard and FIMBank also unchanged at €3.139 and the US$1.18 respectively on thin trading.

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