Daily Market Highlights (24.07.12)

  • MSE Share Index in negative territory for the first time in four sessions with a 0.2% drop to 3,123.295 points as BOV trims some of yesterday’s gains. The 1.4% decline in BOV offset the increases in HSBC and Middlesea whilst FIMBank ended this morning’s session unchanged. Download a copy of the Equity Market Summary.
  • On the bond market, the Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index slid 0.2% lower to 992.566 points as Eurozone yields recovered from yesterday’s all-time low to the 1.26% this morning after Moody’s threatened to downgrade Germany’s ‘AAA’ credit rating. Moody’s also placed the ‘AA’ credit rating of Luxembourg and The Netherlands on negative watch citing the increased possibility of Greece leaving the euro and the increased support the high-rated Eurozone countries would have to provide to troubled member states, especially Spain and Italy.
  • Further demand for HSBC shares helped the Bank’s equity maintain its upward trend with another 0.3% increase to the €2.899 level representing a new 50-week high. Over 41,800 shares changed hands today ahead of the Bank’s interim results publication this Friday 27 July.
  • Meanwhile BOV trimmed some of yesterday’s 4.5% increase as the share price retreated by 1.4% during this morning’s session back to the €2.06 level. Four trades totalling 3,554 shares were executed today. Shortly after the close of today’s session, BOV announced the appointment of Mr Frederick Mifsud Bonnici as the new Chairman.
  • This morning, Middlesea Insurance published its half-year results covering the six months ended 30 June 2012. During the period under review the Middlesea Group generated a net profit attributable to shareholders (excluding the 50% interest in MSV Life plc owned by BOV) of €2.79 million compared with a profit of €1.12 million in the first half of 2011. The Directors explained that the increase in profitability was the result of improvements in the pure technical operations of Middlesea Insurance enhanced further by the positive performance of the Group’s investment portfolio, particularly that of the associate company MSV Life plc. Further details available here. There was a muted reaction in the market to the announcement with a single trade of only 1,500 shares changing hands at the €0.621 level representing a 0.2% rise from the previous close.
  • The only other active equity, FIMBank held on to the US$0.86 level on a small trade of 780 shares.
  • Yesterday marked the opening of subscriptions in respect of the new share issue by Malita Investments plc. The company is issuing a total of 20,000,000 new ‘B’ shares for general public subscription at the nominal value of €0.50 with an over-allotment option of a further 10 million shares. Further details on this IPO available here.