Four equities lift the MSE Equity Price Index
The MSE Equity Price Index gained 0.47% to 3,742.115 points reflecting the gains in MIA, HSBC, Lombard, and FIMBank. Meanwhile, three other equities closed unchanged as total trading activity was muted at just €0.07 million. Download today’s Equity Market Summary.
Lombard Bank Malta plc closed 1.2% higher to the €0.84 level across three trades totalling 10,452 shares. On Wednesday, Lombard published its interim results for the six-month period ended 30 June 2023. Net interest income increased by 25% to €12.7 million (H1 2022: €10.1 million) as the growth in gross interest income outweighed the higher level of interest expense. Likewise, non-interest income surged by 22% to €22.6 million. Lombard’s financial performance was also negatively impacted by a net impairment charge of €1.88 million in contrast to the net impairment reversal of €12.1 million in the first half of 2022. Operating profit amounted to €5.54 million compared to €17.3 million in the same period last year. Excluding the impact of impairment provisions, operating profit surged by 43% to €7.4 million compared to €5.2 million last year. The net profit for the period attributable to shareholders of Lombard amounted to €3.25 million. In the first six months of the year, shareholders’ funds increased by 2.73% (or €3.72 million) to €139.9 million which translates into a net asset value per share of €1.509. The Board explained that Lombard will seek to increase its capital base by circa €50 million in an upcoming Rights Issue
Also in the banking sector, FIMBank plc surged by 9.6% to an over six-month high of USD0.196 on two deals of 9,998 shares. Today, FIMBank published its interim results for the six-month period ended 30 June 2023. Net interest income surged by 30.0% to just under USD18.2 million as the growth in gross interest income outweighed the higher interest expense. Similarly, non-interest income grew by almost 25% to USD 9.62 million. Overall, the net profit for the period under review amounted to USD 3.74 million.
HSBC Bank Malta plc gained 1.7% to the €1.22 level across three trades totalling 5,650 shares.
Also among the large companies by market value, Malta International Airport plc rose by 0.9% to €5.75 over four deals totalling 5,580 shares.
Meanwhile, a single trade of 2,720 shares left the price of PG plc unchanged at the €2.06 level.
Bank of Valletta plc traded flat at the €1.26 level across three deals totalling 8,990 shares.
Similarly, BOV’s insurance associate Mapfre Middlesea plc held the €1.25 level on muted activity.
Yesterday, MedservRegis plc published its interim financial statements covering the six-month period ended 30 June 2023. Revenues surged by 23% to €32 million, which also resulted in an improved operating profit of €3.75 million compared to a marginal operating profit of €0.31 million in the first half of 2022. However, after accounting for net finance costs of €5.54 million, tax charges of €0.17 million, and a loss attributable to minority interest of €0.03 million, the net loss for the period attributable to shareholders amounted to €1.93 million.
Also yesterday, RS2 plc published its interim results. Revenues dropped by 6.1% to €17.6 million as the growth achieved by the ‘Processing Solutions’ arm (+3.6% to €10.2 million) and the ‘Merchant Solutions’ business (+12.3% to €1.31 million) was offset the drop in income from ‘Software (Licensing) Solutions’ (-21.2% to €6.14 million). Operating costs (net of other income) increased by 6.6% to €19.4 million as the higher cost of sales as well as marketing expenses outweighed the lower administrative expenses. Furthermore, the financial performance was dented by an exchange loss of €0.35 million compared to an exchange gain on operating activities of €2.13 million in the first half of 2022. As a result, RS2 registered an operating loss of €2.12 million. The net loss for the period attributable to shareholders amounted to €2.20 million. The outlook until end of 2023 is that business will ramp up until the end of the year by way of new business from existing clients as well as new prospective ones. The board declared a net interim dividend of €0.01315 per ordinary share and of €0.01446 per preference share (equivalent to a total of €3 million) to all shareholders as at close of trading on 13 September 2023. Shareholders can elect to receive the dividend either in cash or through the issuance of new ordinary shares at an attribution price of €1.23 per ordinary share and €1.43 per preference share. The dividend will be paid on 16 November 2023.
MIDI plc also published its interim results. Revenues dropped by 4.8% to €1.45 million (H1 2022: €1.52 million) reflecting a marginal decrease in rental and property management income. Meanwhile, MIDI did not recognise the sale of any units since the final residential development at Tigné Point (known as Fortress Gardens) is still under construction. The net loss for the first half of 2023 amounted to €1.11 million. At 30 June 2023, shareholders’ funds amounted to €100.2 million, which translates into a net asset value per share of €0.4677.
The RF MGS Index increased by 0.31% to 872.726 points. Data published by Eurostat today showed that the inflation rate in the Euro Area is expected to remain stable in August at 5.3%. The prices of food, services and non-energy industries are predicted to increase at a lower year-over-year rate in August. The previous downward pressures on inflation are forecast to be offset, by a smaller annual decrease in the price of energy compared to the previous month.
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