MSE Trading Report weekly round-up for the week ending 3rd October 2008

International markets impact local banks share prices

The Malta Stock Exchange Index closed at 3,642.039 points, losing 4.96% per cent on the week, as the financial markets awaited an American bail-out. This week, ten equities were negotiated, with two equities closing in positive territory, seven equities closing in negative territory and one equity remaining unchanged. During the week, MaltaPost plc was the best performer, whilst Bank of Valletta plc lost most ground.

A total of two hundred and sixty five trades were registered on the stock exchange, with a total turnover EUR15.28 million. In the equity market, one hundred forty six deals were executed for a total value of EUR500,464. In the corporate bond market, twenty six deals were carried out, for a value of EUR178,192, whilst sixty-one deals were executed in government bonds for a total value of over EUR8.75 million. In the Treasury Bills market, thirty two deals were executed for a total value of nearly EUR5.85 million.

In the banking sector, Bank of Valletta plc was the worst performer, after registering a fall of 8.35 per cent on the week, closing the week at EUR3.95, as 48,456 shares changed hands over forty seven deals. BOV traded at a high of EUR4.27 and a low of EUR3.90. In fact the share price of BOV gained slightly on Friday. HSBC Bank Malta plc registered a fall of 7.98 per cent in its share price, closing the week at EUR 3.00, as 63,051 shares changed hands on sixty two deals. The equity traded at a high of Euro3.20 and a low of Euro2.99. Lombard Bank plc also lost some ground, as it registered a loss of 1.61 per cent on the week. The closing price for the week was EUR3.00, as 6,800 shares traded over five deals. FIMBank plc was the other banking equity to register a decrease in its share price, as it closed the week at USD1.84, losing 3.06 per cent, with a volume of 9,170 shares changing hands over three deals, for a total value of EUR11.921.

Crimsonwing plc closed the week unchanged at EUR0.50. Only 8,500 shares were traded in two deals. MaltaPost plc was the best performer this week with its share price increasing by 2.93 per cent and closing at EUR0.844 with only two transactions being registered for a volume of 466 shares. International Hotel Investments plc suffered a drop of 3.85 per cent on its share price this week and closed the week at EUR1.00. Six transactions were registered for a total volume of 26,564 shares. Grand Harbour Marina plc gained 2.33 per cent in one deal of 1,500 shares. The share price closed at EUR2.20.

GO plc registered a minimal loss of 0.05 per cent to close the week at EUR2.20. The total volume traded amounted to 18,225 shares across seventeen deals. Simonds Farsons Cisk plc traded only once during this week on a volume of 3,111 shares. The share price fell by 1.22 per cent to EUR2.60.

This week Simonds Farsons Cisk p.l.c. announced that the Board of Directors approved the group’s financial statements and half yearly report for the six month period ending on 31st July 2008. The Board of Directors of Simonds Farsons Cisk p.l.c. resolved to distribute, out of tax exempt profits, an interim dividend of €0.0078 per share on all ordinary shares. This dividend will be paid on 24th October 2008 to the ordinary shareholders on the Register as at the close of business on 10th October 2008. This will amount to a total interim net dividend of € 200,000. The results show an increase of 4.6 per cent in turnover and a decrease in the gross profit margin from 23.4 per cent to 21.5 per cent. The operating profit of the Farsons Group fell from EUR2.9 million to EUR2 million. The profit before tax amounted to EUR1.5 million compared to a profit of EUR3.3 million for the same period in 2007.

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