MSE Weekly Round-Up Report: 27th – 31st August 2007

MSE Weekly Round-Up Report: 27th — 31st August 2007

Trading picking up on the MSE


The local bourse edged 0.6% higher during a week which saw Bank of Valletta, International Hotel Investments and FIMBank shares register share price increases, while Maltacom and Datatrak Holdings shares closed in negative territory. The Malta Stock Exchange Index closed 29 points higher at the 4,907.84 level, 0.7% higher since the beginning of the year.

Trading picked up in the equity market this week as a total of 250 shares were traded for a turnover over Lm815,000. In the local bond market, a total of 66 deals were executed in corporate bonds and Malta Government Stocks for a turnover just above Lm1.46 million. In addition a total of 14 transactions were executed in seven different Treasury Bills for a traded value over Lm1.45 million.

On Monday, International Hotel Investments (IHI) shares gained 2.8% to close at EUR1.10. The equity managed to close the week at this level, thus being the week’s top equity performer. Activity was strong in IHI shares as 95,702 shares change hands across eighteen deals on the week. On Thursday, its Board of Directors approved the Group’s half-yearly report for the period ended 30th June 2007.

As noted in the report, the Group’s turnover for the period amounted to Eur 38.82 million reflecting an increase of 39% on the turnover levels over the relative period of last year. It was noted that the most notable contributors were Corinthia San Gorg in Malta (45%) and Corinthia Lisboa Hotel in Portugal (14%). During the period, the Group however registered a loss after tax of Eur2.15 million, even though such losses reduced from the figure of Eur3.53 for the same period last year.

The report also points out that, had the newly acquired properties been included in the consolidated results as from the beginning of the year, this loss would have been turned into a Profit of Eur1.27 million. Moreover, with regard to the Group operating profit, this increased to Eur4.20 million from the corresponding profit of Eur1.11 million last year. This mainly resulted due to the improved hotel occupancy and hotel room rates achieved by the Group’s hotels.

Turning back to trading on the Malta Stock Exchange, FIMBank shares recouped the previous week’s losses having gained 2.1% to close back at the US$1.94 level. This was attained on a volume of 70,086 shares which were traded across ten deals. Also within the banking sector, Bank of Valletta closed 2.1% higher on a week-on-week basis at the Lm3.65 level. The equity registered gains in the first two sessions of the week to reach the Lm3.60 level, before rising by a further 1.4% or 5c on Thursday and maintaining this level until the end of the week.

HSBC Bank Malta shares were also highly active as 120,663 shares changed hands across 81 deals on the week. The equity’s weekly high and low prices traded varied from Lm1.935 to Lm1.89, however its share price closed unchanged on a weekly basis at the Lm1.93 level.

Malta International Airport was the other positive performer on a week-on-week basis having gained 0.4% to close at Lm1.40 on a volume of 35,280 shares spread across twenty-four deals.

On the other hand, Maltacom was the worst performer of the week as its share price slumped by 3.4%. This resulted following the publication of the Group’s interim unaudited financial statements for the six-month period ended 30th June 2007. Profit before tax for the Group amounted to Lm5.4 million in comparison to the Lm6.3 million attained for the same period in 2006. However, it was noted that the profit after tax figure includes an amount of Lm0.7 million representing charges incurred as a result of the ongoing restructuring of the Group’s fixed line operations. It was also noted that the Group incurred various one-time charges aimed at improving efficiency and maximising Group synergies that will deliver reduced costs in future periods.

The other negative performer of the week was Datatrak Holdings which dropped 4.35% (1c) to Lm0.22. This was however recorded on a single deal of 3,000 shares. Simonds Farsons Cisk was also amongst the active equities however it did not register any price changes on a weekly basis. In fact, a mere 500 shares were transacted across two deals at the stable price of Lm1.02.

In the bond market, total turnover amounted to Lm32,907 in local corporate bonds during the week with most of the traded bonds closing at the same price level. With regard to Malta Government Stocks, eighteen different issues were traded for a total traded value of Lm1.42 million, with a number of such stocks registering price increases on the week.

This article which was compiled by Jesmond Mizzi Financial Services Limited (JMFS) does not intend to give investment advice and the contents therein should not be construed as such. JMFS is licensed to conduct investment services by the MFSA. The directors or related parties, including the company, and their clients are likely to have an interest in securities mentioned in this article. For further information please contact JFMS at 67/3 South Street Valletta or on tel:  21224410 or email mailto:[email protected]