Daily Market Highlights (31.05.2023)

Banking stocks push MSE Equity Price Index to an 11-month high


The MSE Equity Price Index advanced by 0.78% to an 11-month high of 3,745.275 points as banking stocks (HSBC, BOV, APS and Lombard) and four other securities including large market caps MIA and GO traded higher. Meanwhile, IHI and MaltaPost declined and three other equities closed unchanged. The overall trading activity amounted to €0.44 million. Download today’s Equity Market Summary.

Following recent notable price gains, HSBC Bank Malta plc advanced by a further 4.2% to reach the €1.25 level, the highest price since December 2019. HSBC was subject to eight trades totalling 32,472 shares. Yesterday, HSBC Malta published a Quarterly Update providing information about its performance in Q1 2023 when compared to the same period in 2022. In this respect, HSBC reported a profit before tax of €26.5 million which is a significant rise from the €4.8 million profit reported in Q1 2022. The surge in profitability was attributed to a boost in net interest income as well as the enhanced credit quality of the bank’s loan book. Furthermore, total revenue was reported to have increased by 60% (€18.8 million) as the Bank was able to earn considerable interest on its excess liquidity as opposed to the previous year, when negative interest rates were present.  Additionally, insurance income was also boosted due to improved equity markets.

Bank of Valletta plc also reached its highest level since June 2019 as it advanced by a further 0.8% to the €1.18 level as 63,957 shares changed hands. BOV recovered from an intra-day low of €1.16 (-1.7%).

Also in the banking sector Lombard Bank Malta plc was today’s best performing equity as it increased 6.3% to the €1.01 level on a single deal of 4,156 shares. Today, Lombard published its agenda for its upcoming AGM on 22 June.

APS Bank plc closed 5.1% higher to reach a one-week high of €0.62 over thirteen deals totalling 37,425 shares. Following the recent AGM and scrip dividend option, today the MSE announced the issuance of a further 9,894,985 shares as the large majority of shareholders opted for new shares rather than cash.

Malta International Airport plc was today’s most actively traded equity as it registered a 0.9% gain to the €5.60 price level across fifteen trades totalling 46,502 shares.

GO plc (+1.4%) and its subsidiary company BMIT Technologies plc (+1.9%), both traded higher and closed at the €3.00 and €0.424 levels respectively.

M&Z plc advanced by 0.7% to the €0.68 level on one deal of 8,400 shares.

Meanwhile, International Hotel Investments plc closed 4.5% lower at the €0.535 level on one trade of 912 shares.

MaltaPost plc shed 4.3% as it closed at the €0.45 level over two deals totalling 16,000 shares.

Mapfre Middlesea plc closed unchanged at the €1.50 level after recovering 0.7% from an intra-day low of €1.49 across two trades totalling 16,000 shares.

FIMBank plc and Loqus Holdings plc maintained the USD0.19 and €0.20 levels respectively on muted activity.

The RF MGS Index registered a three-day positive streak as it increased by 0.79% to a two-week high of 879.305 points. Today, several eurozone countries released preliminary inflation estimates showing a decrease in their respective harmonised indices of consumer prices (HICP). In fact, year-on-year inflation in Germany is expected to have declined to 6.3% in May compared to 7.6% in April, a sharper decline than expectations. Furthermore, France and Italy forecasts also showed the previous inflation metric declining by 0.9 and 0.6 percentage points to the figures of 6% and 8.1% respectively. Despite noteworthy retreats in headline inflation, ECB Vice President Luis de Guindos highlighted that the evolution of core inflation will be an important factor in the ECB’s decision making going forward.


This report contains public information only and is not to be construed as investment advice or an offer to buy or sell any securities. Information contained herein is based on data obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but no representations or guarantees are made with regard to the accuracy of the data. Stock markets are volatile and subject to fluctuations which cannot be reasonably foreseen. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. Rizzo, Farrugia & Co. (Stockbrokers) Limited is a company licensed to undertake investment services in Malta by the MFSA under the Investment Services Act, Cap. 370 of the Laws of Malta and a member of the Malta Stock Exchange.