Daily Market Highlights (20.05.2020)

MSE Equity Price Index moves to 5-week low


The MSE Equity Price Index eased by a further 0.14% to a five-week low of 3,924.833 points as the declines in five companies outweighed the gains in three other equities whilst GO and Malita ended the day unchanged. Trading activity in equities improved to €0.16 million with the majority taking place in MIA, GO, Lombard and MaltaPost. Download today’s Equity Market Summary.

Malta International Airport plc eased 1% lower back to the €5.00 level across 8,520 shares.

Lombard Bank Malta plc shed 1% to the €2.08 level across 10,000 shares. Today, Lombard issued an Interim Directors’ Statement providing an update on its business and how ‘COVID-19’ is impacting its performance. In this respect, Lombard explained that as the Maltese economy is set to contract this year, its financial performance stands to be negatively impacted. In fact, income dropped when compared to the corresponding period last year, but costs remained well under control and in line with expectations. Lombard added that its balance sheet has remained strong with the total capital ratio well above minimum regulatory requirements. Moreover, to date, the bank did not experience any need to increase provisions for expected credit losses as a direct result of the ‘COVID-19’ pandemic. With respect to its postal subsidiary – MaltaPost plc – Lombard explained that it continued to deliver postal services uninterruptedly. However, other areas of activity have been significantly affected, not least by the sharp decline in flight connections to and from Malta. This is having a negative impact on some of MaltaPost’s more important revenue streams and which are in part being rigorously mitigated through the efficient and judicious management of costs. MaltaPost’s share price dropped by 3.3% to €1.17 level on volumes totalling 15,200 shares. The company is due to publish its interim financial results covering the six months ended 31 March 2020 on 29 May 2020.

A single deal of just 6,000 shares forced the equity of International Hotel Investments plc to move 0.9% lower to the €0.565 level.

In the property segment, Malta Properties Company plc plunged 6.9% back to the €0.54 level albeit on just 2,550 shares.

Within the same segment, Malita Investments plc traded flat at the €0.89 level across 11,000 shares.

GO plc remained at the €3.56 level across 10,368 shares. Yesterday, GO explained that in view of the extraordinary circumstances related to ‘COVID-19’, it has not as yet taken a final decision on the re-consideration of the recommended net dividend of €0.14 per share for the 2019 financial year. GO also noted that it is continuing to monitor the situation on an ongoing basis and will keep the market updated as necessary.

Meanwhile, HSBC Bank Malta plc edged 1.6% higher to regain the €0.97 level across 15,100 shares.

PG plc climbed 0.5% to the €1.88 level on four deals totalling 4,643 shares.

GlobalCapital plc surged over 24% to the €0.286 level albeit on trivial volumes.

The RF MGS Index drifted lower for the fourth consecutive day as it eased by a further 0.01% to a new two-month low of 1,107.383 points. Fresh data across the euro area showed that inflation dropped by more than expected to just 0.3% in April when compared to the same month in 2019.