Daily Market Highlights (25.11.11)

  • MSE Share Index in negative territory for the third consecutive session with another 0.1% decline to 3,127.594 points. During this morning’s session, HSBC and MaltaPost traded lower whilst MIA edged higher. The only other active equity, BOV, closed the session unchanged. Over the week, the local equity benchmark retreated by 0.9% mainly due to the declines in HSBC and GO. Download a copy of today’s Equity Market Summary.
  • The Rizzo Farrugia MGS Index dropped for the fourth consecutive session to close the week 1% lower at 971.113 points – a new 7-month low. This is in line with the increase in eurozone yields from 1.73% as at 9 November to just under 2.25% today on the back of increasing concerns relating to the Eurozone debt crisis. This week’s news of the intervention by the Bundesbank in a German sovereign bond auction and the downgrade of Portugal’s credit rating to junk status also impacted the euro which fell to a seven-week low of USD1.3251 against the US Dollar.
  • No trades effected in the newly listed Institutional tranches of the Malta Government Stocks and the FR% MGS 2014 (V) issued last week. Furthermore no announcement indicating when the retail tranches of the fixed rate stocks will be listed.
  • BOV traded unchanged at the €2.50 level (also unchanged over the week) across 3,850 shares. Further offers unsatisfied at the closing price with highest bids at the €2.46 level. The Bank published its 2011 Annual Report today ahead of its Annual General Meeting scheduled to be held on 16 December. Amongst the resolutions on the agenda, shareholders will be asked to approve the recommended final gross dividend of €0.08 per share and a 1 for 8 bonus share issue.
  • Meanwhile HSBC slipped by a further 0.4% to its 2011 low of €2.60 – representing a weekly decline of 3.4%. Seventeen trades totalling 25,918 shares were executed today. In the Interim Statement published last week, the Directors revealed that trading conditions remained challenging and a more difficult 2012 is expected. In response to this, the Directors approved a cost-savings plan which will result in a one-off charge of approximately €10 million for the 2011 financial year. Further details available here.
  • A single trade of 968 MaltaPost shares pushed the equity 3.1% lower to the €0.95 level. Further bids of over 29,000 shares remain outstanding at the closing price with lowest offers at the €0.98 level ahead of the postal operator’s full-year results publication on Thursday 1 December.
  • MIA active for the first time since last Monday’s publication of the Interim Statement. In the announcement the Directors explained that since the publication of the half-year financial statements on 30 June 2011 the financial position of the Company remained sound with further growth in passenger traffic. In fact, MIA recently increased its 2011 passenger growth forecast from +3.2% to a rise of at least 4.5%. Overall, the Directors expect the 2011 figures to be ahead of the 2010 pre-tax profit figure of €17 million. Further details available here. Equity edged 0.6% higher today to regain the €1.70 level on volumes of 16,300 shares.